The Opposition Congress on Thursday won the bye-election from Ampati Assembly seat in Meghalaya, becoming the single largest party in the north-eastern state. The assembly seat had fallen vacant after former chief minister Mukul Sangma resigned from the seat early this year following his win in Songsak seat. As per a report in PTI, Congress candidate Miani D Shira, daughter of Sangma, won by a margin of 3,191 votes.
Chief Electoral Officer F R Kharkongor, speaking to PTI, said, “Congress’s Miani D Shira secured 14,259 votes against a total of 11,069 votes polled by NPP candidate Clement G Momin.” The official added that the voters’ turnout for the Ampati by-election was 90.42 per cent.
Following today’s results, Congress now has 21 MLAs in the 60-member Assembly. Ruling National People’s Party (NPP), which is currently heading the coalition government in the state with the support of regional parties and BJP, has 20 MLAs.
Seven MLAs from United Democratic Party, four from Peoples Democratic Front, two each from HSDP and BJP and an MLA from NCP and an Independent merged to form the Meghalaya Democratic Alliance.
Citing the recent developments in Karnataka, where Governor Vajubhai Rudabhai Vala had invited BJP led by B S Yeddyurappa to form the government for being the single largest party, the Congress had staked claim to form the government.
However, former CM, Mukul Sangma, speaking to NDTV, on Tuesday said, “It’s not the right time to put the cards on the table. Politics in Meghalaya is very different; it’s unlike other states and has seen a lot of instability. Running a government in Meghalaya is not a matter of joke.”
After the Assembly elections were declared on March 3 this year, Congress had emerged as the single largest party in the state with 21 seats. However, at the time, Congress lost one seat when Mukul Sangma vacated Ampati, while NPP gained a seat after winning Williamnagar, where elections were postponed to April 27 after NCP candidate Jonathone Sangma was killed in an IED attack on February 18.