CM bats for grandson, drops Capt Sangma project

Chief Minister Dr Mukul Sangma and Social welfare minister Deborah Marak at an election rally in Williamnagar on Friday. (ST)

TURA: Meghalaya Chief Minister Dr Mukul Sangma may be invoking the contributions of Metghalaya’s first chief minister Captain Williamson Sangma in the creation of the state while campaigning for is grandson and Congress candidate Daryl William Cheran Momin, but he has also been instrumental in seeking the deletion of a project from DoNER ministry for the construction and renovation of Captain Williamson Sangma College at Baghmara with an estimated cost of Rs. 2.58 crore.

“Captain Williamson is an acceptable figure among all tribes in Meghalaya. His contribution can never be forgotten. We are fortunate to have young and educated Daryl William Momin, grandson of Captain Williamson as our candidate to fulfil the aspiration of our people,” said the Chief Minister said in an election campaign at Rongara in South Garo Hills on Thursday.

But, Joint Secretary of DoNER Ministry Vijay Bhusan Pathak had written some time ago to Meghalaya Chief Secretary W M S Pariat quoting a letter written by the Chief Minister on September 10, 2013, addressed to the DoNER Minister, seeking the dropping of retained projects from the priority list 2003-04 to 2010-11. The college was one among 45 projects, estimated at Rs. 356.39 crore, under the DoNER Ministry that was marked for deletion by the Mukul Sangma government.

The memorial college for Meghalaya’s first chief minister was set up at Baghmara in the remote South Garo Hills district that was his home constituency where the late Captain Sangma had remained undefeated all through his political life. The Congress-led MUA Government also rejected a resolution moved by GNC member Clifford Marak on March 12 in the Assembly to declare as holiday the death anniversary of Captain Sangma. Marak had threatened to campaign against the Congress for rejecting his resolution on the matter. GNC has extended support to NPP’s PA Sangma.