Shillong, May 18: The opposition Congress in Meghalaya on Friday organised a dharna at Congress Bhavan in Shillong to protest against what the party say is a ‘blatantly’ partisan and “authoritarian act” of the Karnataka Governor, to invite the BJP to form the government in the southern state.
The Congress has also sent a memorandum to the President of India, Ramnath Kovind urging upon him to “safeguard democratic principle and the sanctity of the Constitution”.
The memorandum to the President of India states, “Giving an invite to the BJP, that does not have the requisite majority, clearly establishes that Governor is attempting to permit BJP to convert minority into majority by horse trading and by permitting the legislators to change loyalties based on various financial and other allurements. This is gross mockery of the majority rule and our democratic set up.”
The Meghalaya Congress’ memorandum also pointed out that decision of Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Vala, who is former Finance Minister of BJP in Gujarat with RSS links, to invite BS Yeddyurappa to be sworn in as chief minister of BJP is a “murder of democracy, violation of the constitution, negation of the law and subjugation of every known principles as also judgements of the Supreme Court”.
“Governor’s prejudice can be gauged from the fact that while BJP sought seven days time to prove majority, Governor proceeded to grant them 15 days time for proving majority,” the Meghalaya Pradesh Congress Committee said.
The party also stated that the Prime Minister and BJP president giving dictates to every constitutional functionary to act unconstitutionally and illegally, democracy per se is in danger.
It may be mentioned that after the results of the February 27 polls in Meghalaya, the Congress emerged as the single largest party with 21 seats while the National People’s Party (NPP) came second with 19 seats even as former chief minister, Dr Mukul Sangma won from two seats-Ampati and Songsak.
But the NPP managed to cobble up a post-poll alliance, as the Congress- Janata Dal (Secular) did immediately after the Karnataka results.
The NPP partnered with the United Democratic Party (6), People’s Democratic Front (4), Hill State People’s Democratic Party (2) and lone NCP legislator to stake claim to form the government.
Dr Sangma has since quit Ampati, a seat he had represented since 1993. The by-poll to the Ampati seat will take place on May 28. With the adjourned poll to the Williamnagar seat won by NPP, the two parties are now tied at 20 seats apiece.
Congress legislator, Ampareen Lyngdoh, said that the party in Meghalaya will take a step forward once it becomes the single largest party after the counting in Ampati on June 1.
Lyngdoh said that the precedence created by the BJP is very distasteful and the party would strong oppose it.
“We condemn this and we demand that the democracy in the country should be restored at the earliest. India is not only what the BJP decides, India is about encouraging to grow in the true spirit of democracy as laid down in the constitution of India,” she added.
Meanwhile, Meghalaya Pradesh Congress Committee, president Dr Celestine Lyngdoh said that the party in Meghalaya was compelled to hold the protest due to the style of functioning of the BJP Government.
“It looks like that they do not like to have any opposition. For a democracy to be vibrant the ruling will always need to have a strong opposition. Voices of dissent should be allowed and it should be not be suppressed by bulldozing without listening,” Dr Lyngdoh said.
The Meghalaya Pradesh Congress Committee, chief said that even though the state is far away from Karnataka, but the spirit of democracy has to be maintained.