Two M’laya votes declared invalid

Sangma 2nd from Meghalaya to lose Presidential poll

From Our Special Correspondent

 NEW DELHI: Opposition Presidential candidate Purno A Sangma got fewer votes than UPA candidate Pranab Mukherjee in his home state Meghalaya and scored a duck in Nagaland and Kerala.

In Meghalaya, with the total votes standing at 59, Sangma managed to get 23. In comparison Mukherjee got 34 votes, while two votes were declared invalid.

Meanwhile, Union Minister of State for Water Resources Vincent H Pala was one of the first to greet the President-elect. Chief Minister Dr Mukul Sangma, MPCC chief DD Lapang and host of other top leaders from Meghalaya and the entire North-East arrived here to greet Mukherjee.

The leaders under the banner of North East Congress Coordination Committee will first call on Sonia Gandhi on Monday and then proceed to meet Mukherjee.

Meanwhile, Sangma’s son Conrad K. Sangma has congratulated Mukherjee on his victory. “He has won. I congratulate him (Mukherjee) and wish him the very best,” Conrad, Meghalaya’s leader of opposition, said.

Purno Sangma on Sunday became the second tribal leader from Meghalaya who failed to win the Presidential election after the Late George Gilbert Swell.

Backed by the BJP and National Front in the 1992 presidential election, Swell lost to Congress’ Shankar Dayal Sharma, securing only 346,485 votes against his opponent’s 675,864 votes.

Swell had been Deputy Speaker of Lok Sabha from December 9, 1969 to December 27, 1970 and again from March 27, 1971 to January 18, 1977. (With inputs from IANS)