Meghalaya chief minister Conrad K Sangmaon Friday hinted at welcoming former chief minister and veteran Congress leader DD Lapang saying, “people with such track record, experience, and knowledge can be used in so many ways.”
Terming Lapang’s decision to quit the Congress as shock, Conrad, who is the national president of the National People’s Party (NPP) told reporters that “It was sad that Lapang was forced to resign from the party when he has contributed so much to the state and the Congress party. I think, seeing all works he had done and contributions he had made, he (Lapang) should have been given due respect. But it is sad that he has no other option but to resign from the Congress.”
Conrad also said that a person of his (Lapang) stature should have not been treated in that manner.
“He (Lapang) has a lot of concerns for the people of the state and I am happy to see that he is taking up issues concerning the people of the state. I think the Congress will realise that it is a great loss to them.”
Asked if the NPP would welcome Lapang to join the paty, the chief minister said, “We are a party which is in coalition and always look at individuals who are concerned for the people. If he comes to NPP, UDP or PDF, that is nothing that I can say. But people with such track record, experience, and knowledge, can be used in so many ways. Once again, it is a great loss to the Congress to lose a person like him.”
On Thursday, Lapang, the five times chief minister of Meghalaya and face of the Congress in the state and the Northeast, submitted his resignation letter to AICC president, Rahul Gandhi alleging that lately the AICC has been embarking upon a policy of “phasing out senior and elderly people.”
The veteran politician quit the Congress, the party he served for over 40 years.
“In my opinion, it means that the service and contribution of senior and elderly people are no longer useful to the party. Since the spirit and enthusiasm to work for the people are still burning inside me, this restriction frustrated and compelled me to be no longer comfortable to be in the party. With my present age and health condition, I have decided to continue serving the people of the country, my state and its people in the same manner wherever I am. Therefore, reluctantly and with my heavy heart, I would like to discontinue my dedication towards the Congress party and I tender my resignation with immediate effect,” Lapang said in his single page letter to AICC chief.
Lapang was the president of the Meghalaya Pradesh Congress Committee and took oath as chief minister of the state five times in his long political career where he represented as MLA of Nongpoh Assembly constituency since the inception of Meghalaya in 1972.
Lapang lost the Assembly elections only once in 1993. He decided to stay away from contesting the 2018 Assembly elections from Nongpoh but worked for youth Congress leader, Mayrald Born Syiem, who successfully became the successor of the veteran leader.