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Sonia, Rahul agree to meet rebels

Pala rushing to Shillong to meet dissident Ministers, MLAs

From CK Nayak

New Delhi: The ongoing crisis in the Meghalaya Congress has taken a new turn with both AICC present Sonia Gandhi  and vice-president Rahul Gandhi agreeing to listen to the grievances of those who have started demanding change of leadership after the party’s debacle in Tura by-poll held on May 16.
This was decided when both Sonia and Rahul held a meeting with the MPCC chief  D D Lapang, Shillong MP Vincent H Pala at their 10 Janpath residence on Tuesday.
AICC general secretary in charge Meghalaya V. Narayanasamy was also present.
Accordingly, Pala is rushing to Shillong on Wednesday to convey the message of the party high command, AICC sources said.
The beleaguered Chief Minister Mukul  Sangma, who met Rahul Gandhi, left for Shillong on Tuesday morning without meeting the AICC chief.  Lapang, meanwhile, has extended his stay in the national capital.
The mother-son duo gave a patient hearing to Lapang who did most of the talking.
Neither Lapang nor Pala was available for comments.
At one point, Sonia said that the Ministers, MLAs and top party functionaries, who have grievances, should first meet the party vice-president.
“At this point, Rahul intervened and said that he would like to meet such party leaders on any day or any time convenient for them,” sources said.
Lapang explained that the party faced series of defeats in the recent past.
In the last polls, the Congress candidate despite being an MLA as well as the wife of Chief Minster lost by unprecedented margin, Lapang told Sonia adding that the party’s vote share came down in each of the 24 assembly segment including her own.
The dissidents are unhappy with the Chief Minister’s style of functioning.

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