After 5 party MLAs quit, former CM Lapang removed as Meghalaya Congress president

New Delhi, Dec 30 (IANS) A day after five Congress MLAs resigned from the Meghalaya Assembly to contest upcoming polls on the ticket of NDA-affiliated National People’s Party (NPP), Congress President Rahul Gandhi on Saturday removed former Chief Minister D.D. Lapang as state unit president and replaced him with Celestine Lyngdoh.

Lyngdoh is a cabinet Minister in Chief Minister Mukul Sangma’s cabinet. Vincent H. Pala, who is a Lok Sabha MP from Shillong, has been appointed PCC working president.

However, in a bid to assuage Lapang, Gandhi has appointed him as advisor of Pradesh Congress Committee.

Gandhi also appointed Celestine Lyngdoh as president of the 13-member Pradesh Election Committee for the upcoming assembly elections in the state.

Among the others who are present in the Election Committee are Chief Minister Mukul Sangma, Vincent H. Pala, James S. Lyngdoh, D.D. Lapang, Debora C. Marak, M.M. Danggo, R.C. Laloo, Kennedy C. Khyriem, Cherak W. Momin, Charles Pyngrope, R.V. Lyngdoh, Joplin Scott Shylla.

In a setback to the Congress in Meghalaya, eight MLAs including five from Congress, on Friday resigned from the assembly to contest the polls on the ticket of National People’s Party (NPP), which is part of NDA.

The Congress legislators, who include former Deputy Chief Minister Rowell Lyngdoh, former cabinet ministers Prestone Tynsong, Coming One Ymbon, Sniawbhalang Dhar and Ngaitlang Dhar submitted their resignation letters to Assembly Commissioner and Secretary, Andrew Simon.

Apart from the five Congress legislators, the other three are United Democratic Party legislator Remington Pyngrope, and Independents, Hopeful Bamon and Stephanson Mukhim.