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Fractured mandate: Cong single largest, NPP gainer

Unfavourable verdict for BJP & regional alliance

SHILLONG: Meghalaya yet again witnessed a fractured verdict on Saturday with the Congress emerging as the single largest party with 21 seats in the House of 59 followed by NPP with 19.
Polling was deferred in Williamnagar following the death of NPP candidate Jonathone Sangma.
The UDP-HSPDP-GNC combine, which had a pre-poll alliance, could garner only eight seats with UDP six and HSPDP two. GNC drew a blank.
The People’s Democratic Party (PDF), the new entrant in the state’s electoral politics, won four seats though its chairman and KHADC chief PN Syiem lost to Congress candidate HM Shangpliang from Mawsynram.
Though the BJP, which fielded as many as 47 candidates, emerged as a potential threat to the Congress prior to the polls, it could not make a deep impact as its dream ended with securing just two seats.
Others who secured minimum number of seats include NCP and KHNAM with one each and Independents three.

Congress candidate from East Shillong shows victory sign after emerging victorius in the MLA election here on Saturday . (Photo by Sanjib Bhattacharjee).

Though the Congress secured 21 seats, it is short of nine seats as the party had 30 seats in the outgoing Assembly. While it secured 11 seats in the Khasi Hills region out of the total 36, the party got only 10
seats out of the 24 in Garo Hills.
Mukul Sangma won both Ampati and Songsak seats.
Of the three constituencies from where Congress heavyweights — DD Lapang, RC Laloo and Roshan Warjri — withdrew, the party could retain only one.
Nongpoh, which was earlier represented by Lapang, was retained by Congress candidate and Lapang’s nominee Mayralborn Syiem.
However, Laloo, who represented Jowai and Warjri from North Shillong could not ensure retention of their candidates.
The biggest gainer is NPP whose seat tally jumped to 19 from two in the 8th Assembly. The party bagged eight seats in Khasi Hills and 11 in Garo Hills.
UDP had eight members in the outgoing Assembly and now the strength has been reduced to six.
UDP admitted that it was a shock for the party as it lost the much expected seats like Nongthymmai, Mawlai and West Shillong.

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