Mukul has plans to join BJP post polls: Tynsong

Deputy CM reiterates Conrad’s recent claim

SHILLONG, Feb 2: The NPP, which is seeking to retain power in Meghalaya, is doing all it can to gain an upper hand against its strongest rival — TMC — including playing a likely “psychological game” by repeatedly claiming that leaders of the Mamata Banerjee-led party would ditch TMC and join BJP after the elections.
Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma was the first to “warn” the West Bengal chief minister based on “word in the market” that some Trinamool leaders were discussing switchover plans after the elections. Conrad had even asked his counterpart “to verify the credentials of her party confidantes, who are already discussing switchover plans once the elections are over”.
Reacting to Conrad’s statement, Opposition Chief Whip and TMC MLA George B Lyngdoh had accused the NPP-BJP combine of working out an action plan to “buy” TMC legislators post elections.
On Thursday, NPP vice president and Deputy Chief Minister Prestone Tynsong claimed that TMC leader Mukul Sangma has plans to ditch the party and join the BJP along with his entire team post-elections.
Recalling that the chief minister had hinted at it at an election rally in Adokgre, Tynsong said, “I am going to repeat the same thing that there is a move by Dr Mukul to ditch the TMC along with his whole team and join the BJP after the elections”.
“I don’t know what the arrangement is but there is already a pre-planned move that whether they win four or five seats, everyone will go to the BJP,” he claimed.
Tynsong asked people not to be misled by the “divisive” strategy of the Opposition leader “who has one foot planted in the TMC and the other in the BJP”.
“He can jump anywhere, anytime. Dr Mukul also knows he is not getting many seats,” the NPP leader added.
‘BJP is an empty vessel’
Reacting to Martin M Danggo’s decision to quit the NPP and join BJP, Tynsong made light of the saffron party poaching NPP candidates.
He said the voters have realised the BJP is an empty vessel that sounds the most through its claims and threats.
“To claim that no government will be formed without the BJP is easy and even the NPP can make such claims. There is a saying that an empty vessel makes much noise,” Tynsong said.
On BJP stopping short of exiting from the NPP-led MDA coalition citing corruption, Tynsong indicated the party would have left if it seriously wanted to. “When the allegations are made after more than four and a half years of being a part of the coalition government, it becomes apparent that they are baseless,” he said.
He added that he is not surprised by the dual nature of the BJP.
“Let the people judge. Our voters are mature enough to reply to their baseless allegations on March 2 (the day of voting),” Tynsong said.
He declined to answer a question on whether or not the NPP would align with the BJP after the election results are declared. He indicated the NPP was keen on forming a government on its own by targeting 34 seats.
‘Danggo’s desertion shocking’
Tynsong, however, admitted that the NPP was shocked that Danggo had hurriedly joined the BJP.
“I am not sure what made him take that decision. When you have made a decision, you must have done some calculations. But the people of Ranikor will have some suspicion since he decided to join the BJP at the very last minute.
“We will take a call on whether to set up a candidate or not (in Ranikor). I will sit with the CM and other senior leaders and accordingly, we will take an appropriate decision,” Tynsong said.
“Why did he leave after praising the NPP all this while? There is something wrong. Maybe, there is some benefit or a deal behind his decision,” the Deputy CM said, adding, “I hope that people, who are elected, will remain firm on their principles. I hope that they will not be swayed or they will move from one camp to another.”

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