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Meghalaya minister quits to contest Speaker’s post

 SHILLONG, Sept 11 - Meghalaya Tourism and Water Resources Minister Metbah Lyngdoh tendered his resignation on Tuesday to contest the election for the Assembly Speaker’s post.

Lyngdoh, a senior United Democratic Party (UDP) leader and a three-time legislator, also filed his nomination papers. He was accompanied by Chief Minister Conrad Sangma, ministers and MLAs of the ruling Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA) at the time of filing his nomination.

The Opposition candidate, Winnerson D Sangma of the Congress, was also accompanied by a host of Congress legislators when he filed his nomination.

The election was necessitated following the demise of Assembly Speaker Donkupar Roy on July 28. Roy, who was the UDP chief, was elected to the post of Speaker on March 12, 2018. The election will be held on September 13, the last day of the Assembly’s Autumn Session.

In the 60-member Assembly with an effective strength of 59, the National People’s Party, which leads the coalition Government, has 21 members, the United Democratic Party has eight and the People’s Democratic Front four. There are two members each from the BJP and the Hill State People’s Party, one member each from the Nationalist Congress Party and the Khun Hynniewtrep National Awakening Movement, besides one independent member.

Going by the numbers, Lyngdoh is expected to comfortably defeat Sangma as the MDA has a total of 40 MLAs.

However, Leader of the Opposition Mukul Sangma said that the Opposition candidate may win the election. – IANS

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