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Friday, June 14, 2024

Congress, BJP set to rub shoulders in budget session today

Assembly Budget Session to begin on Friday after new political alignments in state.

SHILLONG:

The Budget Session of the Meghalaya assembly starting on Friday will witness history when Congress and the BJP, which do not lose any opportunity to go for each other’s jugular, share the treasury benches.

Never in the history of Indian legislature have the Congress and the BJP together supported a state government.

Mawlai legislator Process T Sawkmie, when asked how he felt working together with the BJP, said that the party has been accepted across the country and in the state as well, but reiterated that he and the four other Congress MLAs had joined the ruling MDA for the development of their respective constituencies.

On reports that the Meghalaya Pradesh Congress Committee (MPCC) is awaiting the return of the five MLAs, Sawkmie said that if they wanted so they should not have suspended them in the first place.

Sawkmie also said that the last five remaining Congress MLAs will be meeting on Friday to discuss their suspension by the AICC.

The five MLAs attended a meeting of the MDA on Thursday.

Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma told reporters before the meeting that the five MLAs will not only strengthen the MDA in the assembly but outside the House as well.

“I have always believed that when we are working together in a positive way keeping the people in mind, it is good. They have come with a positive spirit to work together with the government and I am sure it will strengthen us not just in the House but even outside,” he said.

The Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA) coalition is made up of the NPP, UDP, an associate member of the UDP, Congress, PDF, HSPDP, BJP, KHNAM, NCP and an Independent legislator.

The Congress, which won 21 seats in 2018, was reduced to five legislators after a series defections and deaths in its ranks.

In November last year, 12 Congress MLAs merged with the All India Trinamool Congress.

The last five Congress MLAs recently extended their support to the ruling MDA coalition and were suspended by the party high command for not consulting them.

In the 60 member assembly, 48 are in the ruling – NPP 23, UDP nine, which includes an associate member, Congress five, PDF four, BJP and HSPDP two each, KHNAM, NCP and Independent one each.

The Budget Session will open with the governor’s address while the budget will be presented on March 9 and passed on March 14.

Of the ten working days, seven days have been allotted for government business and three days  for private members’ business.
The session will conclude on March 17.

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