James K Sangma, who has allegedly been involved in large-scale corruption, was dropped as the home (police) minister of Meghalaya on Tuesday.
According to sources, Meghalaya chief minister Conrad Sangma took the decision after coming under pressure from senior ministers of UDP and PDF – partners of the MDA coalition government – who started to register their protest against James K Sangma.
It was tough to cut the home (police) portfolio from James K Sangma, who is the elder brother of the Meghalaya chief minister, but the later had no option.
The district council affairs portfolio has also been removed from minister James Sangma.
As per a notification issued by Meghalaya chief secretary MS Rao on Tuesday, Lahkmen Rymbai is the new home (police) minister.
After reallocation of the portfolios, minister James K Sangma now has taxation, power, food, civil supplies & consumer affairs, law, information & public relations departments.
Apart from the home (police) department, Lahkmen Rymbai has forest & environment, border area development and education departments.
Alexander Laloo Hek retains health & family welfare department. The minister also has home (jail) and home (passport), arts & culture departments.
Minister Hamletson Dohling has been given the responsibility of district council affairs, urban affairs, municipal administration and information technology departments.
It may be mentioned that minister James Sangma also misbehaved with the journalists on January 6 and has neither tendered an apology for nor replied to the journalists’ queries till date.
The minister used “unpleasant words” when eight journalists wanted to ask him questions on a number of issues on January 6.
But instead of taking questions, James Sangma avoided the press and alleged that one of the senior journalists blocked his way.
On January 7, the press fraternity had submitted a list of 24 questions to Sangma and demanded that he should tender an apology for his rude behaviour.
However, there was no reply from the minister even after one week.