Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Political parties shift focus towards Gambegre bypoll


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SHILLONG, June 13: Within days of the Lok Sabha elections, political parties in the state have now trained their eyes on the vacant Gambegre Assembly seat, elections to which will be held within six months.
The Assembly bypoll in Gambegre is going to be significant for all political parties in the state.
For the ruling NPP which suffered embarrassment in both Tura and Shillong seats in the Lok Sabha election, the Gambegre bypoll will be crucial to bolster the party’s image and reassert its hold over the state’s political spectrum.
Reports have suggested that the NPP ground workers in Garo Hills have suggested the names of former cabinet minister James PK Sangma and Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma’s wife, Mehtab Chandee as the potential candidates for the bypoll.
Not to be left behind, the BJP is also going to make attempts to prove a point and is likely to field its most prominent leader in Garo Hills, Bernard N Marak as its candidate from Gambegre.
Marak was due to contest the Lok Sabha election from the Tura seat and had done considerable ground work to stake claim to the party ticket.
However, the BJP leadership’s decision to skip the Lok Sabha polls in Meghalaya and support the ruling NPP dashed his hopes of representing Tura in the Parliament.
The other prominent political entity in Garo Hills — Congress — is also keen on winning the Gambegre seat to cement its position in the Assembly as the chief opposition party.
The Congress is confident of a positive outing in the Gambegre seat, viewed by many as a stronghold of newly-elected Lok Sabha member Saleng A Sangma.
Although Congress Legislature Party leader, Ronnie V Lyngdoh has stated that the party is yet  to meet to take a call on the bypoll, sources from the party have indicated that senior Congress leader and former deputy chief minister, Deborah Ch Marak will likely be the party candidate from Gambegre.
As far as the Trinamool Congress is concerned, the name of former MLA, Zenith Sangma and his wife Sadhiarani M Sangma are currently doing the rounds and the likely party candidates for the bypoll.


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