Mukul Sangma was today sworn in as the 23rd chief minister of Meghalaya with the state Governor administering the oath of office and secrecy to him at a grand ceremony in the Raj Bhawan here.
47-year-old Mukul,who led the Congress to a spectacular victory with 29 seats in the 60-member Assembly,just two short of a simple majority,became the chief minister for the second straight term.
He was administered the oath of office by Governor Ranjit Sekhar Mooshahary.
Speaking to reporters after the swearing-in ceremony,Sangma said,Our focus will only be on development,development and development because the people of the state deserve it. It will be our sincere commitment…that whatever promises we have made shall be implemented in letter and spirit.
He said addressing the core issue of backwardness and poverty in the state would be the number one agenda of the new government.
Apart from 29 Congress MLAs,eight Independent candidates have assured of ‘unconditional’ support in the government formation. So has the NCP which has won two seats.
According to a top Congress functionary,Sangma has already finalised the list of ministers in consultation with AICC president Sonia Gandhi in New Delhi.
From student leader to Meghalaya CM
A practising physician,Mukul Sangma was active in Congress politics right from his student days and rose to become a leader from the Garo Hills region soon after P A Sangma left the party in the 1990s.
Sangma led the Congress to win a record 29 seats in the 60-member House,though two short of a majority.
Over the years he served not only as deputy chief minister,but was also given some most important portfolios like home,finance,power and health.
Sangma joined active politics in 1993 after relinquishing service as medical and health officer at Zikzak PHC and was elected to the Assembly from Ampatigiri as an independent candidate to be appointed chairman of the Meghalaya Transport Corporation.
He was re-elected to the Assembly from Ampatigiri in 1998,2003 and 2008 as a Congress candidate.
In 2003,he became the home and education minister in the D D Lapang ministry.
In 2005,he was appointed the deputy chief minister but was forced to resign on October 7 that year after five persons were killed in police firing at Williamnagar in East Garo Hills district and four persons at Tura in West Garo Hills district on September 30 during an agitation against a state-level committee’s recommendations on restructuring of the Meghalaya Board of Secondary Education.
In 2009,he again became deputy chief minister of Congress-led Meghalaya United Alliance government led by chief minister D D Lapang.
After Lapang resigned on April 19,2010,Sangma was subsequently sworn in as the chief minister on his 45th birthday.
Sangma was born on April 20,1965 at Chengkompara village in the present day West Garo Hills district to Binoy Bhushan M Marak and Roshana Begum.
He completed his school education from the Government High School in Ampati in 1982 and passed his pre-university examination in Science from St. Anthony’s College in Shillong in 1984.
He graduated in medicine from the Regional Institute of Medical Sciences (RIMS) in Imphal in 1989.
While studying,he occupied a number of positions in the governing body of the Students Council of RIMS while he was in the Youth Congress.
He was also instrumental in getting exemption for his medical college from agitation programmes called by Manipuri NGOs.
He joined as a medical and health officer at Zikzak Public Health Centre in 1991.