Wednesday, June 20, 2012




BJP led NDA has finally decided to support Sri P.A.Sangma, as the Presidential candidate. 

Purno Agitok Sangma was born September 1, 1947 in  Meghalaya. He is a former Speaker of Lok Sabha and Chief Minister of Meghalaya. He was a co-founder of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and was a member of the Lok Sabha for eight terms, i.e. 6th, 7th, 8th, 10th, 11th, 12th, 13th, and 14th Lok Sabha. Currently he represents the Tura (ST) constituency in the West Garo Hills district in the eighth Meghalaya Legislative Assembly. After completing his graduation in (B.A. (Hons.) from St. Anthony's College, Shillong, he went to Dibrugarh University in Assam for his Masters degree in International Relations. Subsequently, he also obtained a degree in Law (LL.B).

 He was Speaker of the Lok Sabha ( May 25, 1996 – March 23, 1998 ); Minister of Information and Broadcasting (1995–1996 );  Minister of Labour and Employment (February 1995 – September 1995); Chief Minister of Meghalaya ( February 6, 1988 – March 25, 1990 );

He has offered himself for contesting the Presidential Elections. NDA  has dithered and dithered and finally zeroed in on him as its Candidate.

From the beginning, three potential candidates were evincing interest in contesting in varying Degrees. Pranab Mukherjee was the choice of UPA. UPA was dithering much like the NDA, but, Mamata’s moods clinched his candidature finally. 

NDA’s first choice was Abdul Kalam. Personally, if I am to vote, I would still go for Abdul Kalam as the No.1 choice. But, Kalam, having been in the office of President, does not want embarrassment in losing an election for the same post. And, that is quite understandable. If UPA also had accepted his candidature, he might have agreed to stand for the election. 

Pranab Mukherjee is of course a versatile Politician, reasonably Non-Controversial, and as Political commentators say, he is of the Rajya Sabha Type, not Lok Sabha Type – which is a great praise only for a presidential candidate. He can be a good Presidential Candidate. But then, UPA somehow, does not seem to understand the need for consensus – on crucial issues – like the Presidential Election, speaker election, Lok Pal Bill and so on. Before open declaration of Pranabda’s candidature, Congress must have reached out to BJP for their approval. In fact, from day one, Congress and BJP must have sat together to arrive at such a consensus.

There were (and are) many in NDA who were (and are) good friends of Pranab Mukherjee. At that point of time , P.A.Sangma was not much in the Picture. But then, the way, UPA went about declaring Pranabda’s candidature first, NDA had no option but not to accept the candidature of Pranabda, despite his obvious Credentials. That was not the way, a consensus was ever reached.

It cannot accept the Congress Nominee but Dr.Kalam is unavailable. And, P.A.Sangma is available. Looking at his credentials, I don’t think, any one can say that he is not suitable as President. He has more education, more experience and more public life than many Past Presidents. As Speaker, he had shown excellent temperament in reaching out to all Political parties. Another strong Point in his favour is – North eastern region needs to come into the Central Focus of India, and this is very important for India, for many, many reasons. Who else can better accomplish that, than P.A.Sangma?

So, why not P.A.Sangma, as presidential Contestant of NDA? Why Not?

I think, NDA seems to have done the right thing. This, I feel in retrospect. But, when the decision was not there – I thought not contesting against Pranabda would be wiser for NDA. Not anymore. I think, this contest is good.  

P.A.Sangma may win or lose – which is not the main thing. That India has a presidential candidate from Meghalaya, who has vast support all over India – is the main thing.

Whoever wins, India will have a GOOD PRESIDENT.

If it is P.A.SANGMA, India will have more of North East all over India   – and that is wonderful for India in many ways.

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