Meghalaya’s United Democratic Party (UDP) leader, Paul Lyngdoh on Tuesday called for serious efforts to reverse the trend of business tycoons and people who lack qualification fighting the battle of ballot.
Lyngdoh who is seeking re-election for the fourth time in the upcoming Assembly polls from West Shillong constituency told this to reporters after filing his nomination papers in Shillong on Tuesday.
He stressed on possessing the quality of three ‘E’ – educational qualification, experience and ethics – in as far as joining the electoral battle, even as he focussed on uplifting another three ‘E’ – economy, education and environment in the State by legislators and those at the helm of affairs.
Lyngdoh took a jibe at his Congress rival candidate, Mohendro Rapsang, known for his big business empire.
Lyngdoh also talked about challenges which he claimed that candidates like him have to fight against three ‘Cs’ – criminalization of politics, cash power and cartelization of politics.
When asked how to reverse the trend, Lyngdoh while recalling that the State has had a number of stalwarts in the past, said, “As stakeholders we all have our own roles to play. I think time has come for institutions including religious bodies and churches to come out more vigorously against this trend which is going to halt the development of Meghalaya. We have to ensure that participatory democracy is not be diluted because the biggest participants will be only those who have a share in the pie. They (business tycoons) will always try to concentrate on their own business empire and that will be at the cost of the people of the State. When their business interest comes into conflict with interest of the people of Meghalaya, they will obviously prefer to safeguard their own business interest. Thus the interest of Meghalaya becomes a greatest danger.”
Stating that it is a wakeup call for the people of Meghalaya if they want a functioning, effective, delivery oriented government, Lyngdoh said, it is time to choose candidates on the basis of educational qualification, experience and ethics.
“Once we do that, the rest will take care of itself. I have defeated a major business empire in the past, and we are going to do it again to prove our point. I am confident people will repose their faith in me once again,” Lyngdoh said.
Lyngdoh was also confident that the regional alliance, a combination of the UDP, Hill State People’s Democratic Party (HSPDP) and Garo National Council (GNC) would win this election and form the next government.
“When we have this understanding before the election, we are clear that this alliance will come to power on its own without the support of others,” Lyngdoh said.
He also clarified that though the UDP is part of the BJP-led North East Democratic Alliance (NEDA), but the concept of NEDA was for development oriented platform for which regional parties in the North-east are under it.