SHILLONG, Feb 24 - Facing the heat from Congress candidates during the campaign for the Autonomous District Council polls over the Citizen’s (Amendment) Bill (CAB), the United Democratic Party said today it is “uncomfortable of the BJP’s presence in Meghalaya Government.”
The UDP is a constituent of the Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA) Government, which also includes the BJP and by virtue of that equation the Congress has been campaigning that indirectly the UDP is also supporting the CAB.
Not just the CAB, the UDP has also been cornered by the Congress during the ongoing campaign on a wide ranging issues involving the BJP. One of the emotive issues that are being exploited by the Congress in this Christian dominated State is the “beef ban” issue. The beef ban issue is nothing but the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (Regulation of Livestock Markets) Rules 2017 that the Centre notified on the Supreme’s Court direction dated 13 July, 2015 to regulate trade in livestock and transport of cattle to ensure their welfare at animal markets and also prevent smuggling.
The Congress has nonetheless has milked the notification to its advantage over time and the ADC polls are no different.
“The UDP is uncomfortable of the BJP’s presence in the MDA Cabinet,” Allantry Dkhar, UDP’s vice-president said. He nonetheless clarified that the two BJP legislators (AL Hek and Sanbor Shullai) have vocally opposed the CAB.
Arguing that unlike the Asom Gana Parishad which walked out of the BJP Government in Assam, the UDP has stayed as the MDA is not being headed by the BJP, but the NDA and the BJP is a minor alliance partner. The UDP has recently walked out of the North East Democratic Alliance, an alliance of regional parties from the NE region. Dkhar said kicking out the BJP out of the Government is the National People’s Party’s prerogative as it heads the Government.