SHILLONG, June 29: Ahead of the visit of the All India Congress Committee (AICC) general secretary CP Joshi in Shillong to assess the dissidence issue in the Meghalaya Congress party, Lok Sabha MP Vincent H Pala today in unequivocal terms said that the members of the Congress Legislature Party (CLP) are the sole authority to decide the leadership issue.
Pala, who is known as the leader of the Congress dissident camp, told The Sentinel, “Don’t call me a rallying point for the dissidents. I have simply voiced their grievances and the ball is now in the AICC court.”
“The elected legislators will decide the fate of the leadership and I have no say on the Congress Legislature Party (CLP)’s decision”, said the two-time party MP from Shillong.
On being asked if he is happy with the Chief Minister’s performance, Pala said, “Yes, he has done a good job in handling militancy in Garo Hills as well as tackling the NGOs in Khasi Jaintia Hills but that way he could not handle the headmen issue, the issue of dual post championed by the Chief Executive Member (CEM) of the Khasi Hills Autonomous District Council (KHADC) Pynshngain N Syiem.”
“Going in line with the rebel MLAs, me and DD Lapang have aired those voices before the AICC leadership,” Pala said.
He made it clear that he will be camping in Shillong when the AICC general secretary CP Joshi will visit Shillong on July 4 and 5.
Pala has also categorically made it clear that he is behind KHADC chief and Congress legislator Pynshngain N Syiem, who openly took on Chief Minister Mukul Sangma.
The AICC general secretary, in his two day stay is expected to meet the 30 elected Congress legislators to solicit their views on the functioning of the Chief Minister.
The Chief Minister Sangma, who is in Mumbai, could not be contacted for his comments.