In a jolt to Congress’s aspirations in the state of Meghalaya, 4 Congress MLAs today joined the BJP, in presence of senior BJP leaders like Ram Madhav and Union Minister KJ Alphons:
— ANI (@ANI) January 2, 2018
Things might soon turn out to be more embarrassing for the Congress as according to Naveen Kapoor, a journalist with the ANI, seven other Congress leaders apart from these four MLAs are also expected to join the BJP today.
The mass exodus from the Congress began on Friday when five legislators resigned from the party to join the National People’s Party which is an ally of the BJP. Apart from this, two independent legislators who were supporting the incumbent Congress government, decided to resign from the assembly.
As a result of these resignations, the total Congress MLAs fell to 24, in a now 51 member assembly. The Congress coalition though continues to retain the majority, thanks to its allies which takes its consolidated strength to 35. Its allies include, eight independents, two from the NCP and a solitary member of North East Socialist Democratic Party.
Incidentally this switch-over from the Congress, comes barely 15 days after Rahul Gandhi was ‘elected’ as the Congress president, thereby ushering the party into a new era. As a result of this, people might start questioning as to how much confidence state level leaders have in Rahul Gandhi, considering a few didn’t even wait for a whole month to experience congress under Rahul Gandhi.
The state goes to polls next year and such “side-switching”, might signal a realignment in the state’s political scene. This switch over to the BJP also significantly comes ahead of BJP President Amit Shah’s visit to the state on 6th January. In this visit, Shah is going to address an election rally and will also take stock of the election preparations.
It remains to be seen whether this dissipating political strength of the Congress party in Meghalaya works in favour of the BJP, thereby enabling the latter to form a government in the state.