Leader of Opposition, Dr Mukul Sangma, Lok Sabha MP from Shillong Vincent H. Pala, Meghalaya PCC president Celestine Lyngdoh and AICC secretary in-charge of research department Ranajit Mukherjee and few MLAs attended the meeting.
Suggestions were given on various issues concerning Meghalaya and the Northeast in general and laws to be made by Parliament should not be done without understanding the complexity and without taking into consideration the issues pertaining to the indigenous communities of the Northeast.
“Many in-depth discussions have happened and we have been enriched by this consultation in addition to various pending contentious issues which need to be resolved,” said former Meghalaya chief minister Dr Mukul Sangma.
He said this exercise (consultation) would complete most probably in February before compiling the final manifesto for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.
Sangma informed that suggestions have emerged that if Congress is given the mandate in the upcoming elections, the Citizenship (Amendment) Bill would be scrapped and the party would give due importance to the true spirit of federal system.
Asked how the Congress would translate its promises in the manifesto if parties that engaged in mudslinging with it during elections and come together to form coalition government, Sangma said, “The approach of the Congress is very different. We don’t give promises what we don’t intend to implement or fulfil.”
“In 2013 too, we had the party manifesto and we have done auditing of our own manifesto in respect of what we have promised and how far we have achieved and could implement them,” he said.
However, Mukul Sangma slammed the BJP-led NDA government and the NPP-led Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA) government saying, “In 2018, it was promised that in six months, coal mining will open by BJP leaders. Even Rajnath Singh (Union home minister) and other Union ministers when they came here made that statement. It was with the knowledge of the Prime Minister.”
“In 2014, they promised to bring back money and give Rs 15 lakh in people’s account. These are promises which are on record and the nation knows. Where have those promises gone? This means that they have made promises just to get votes, and full of lies.”
Attacking the MDA government including Meghalaya chief minister Conrad K. Sangma, the leader of opposition said, “You have seen how they lied in the Assembly when the issue of coal mining was taken up. When the issue of coal mining was brought to the notice of the government, it is the responsibility of everyone particularly elected representatives.”
“We drew the attention of the government and the chief minister but next day he gave a statement that there was no illegal mining. Now, he is lying before the people of the state and the nation,” said Mukul Sangma.
“They lie before and after elections. I do not know if they have opened a good school to learn the art of lying. But the Congress has a system and we don’t lie,” Mukul said.