Shillong: The Congress, while campaigning for the 2018 Assembly polls, will focus on clarifying the ‘lies’ of the BJP which has tried to put it in the people’s minds that the state government was responsible for the ban on coal mining in Meghalaya.
[Meghalaya has been for some in the international news because of the highly dangerous methods of pit mining practiced in local privately owned coal mines.]
It also dared Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday to come and announce that the ban would be lifted.
The Congress will also highlight the implementation of livelihood programmes initiated by the Mukul Sangma government.
AICC general secretary in-charge of the Northeast, C.P. Joshi, said the Congress would form the government again.
Joshi, who arrived here on Tuesday evening, held discussions with MLAs, members of district councils, PCC office-bearers, district and block committees and frontal organisations and party workers.
“I am happy that good suggestions were given and we will use them while framing our election manifesto. With the feedback I got, I am confident that the Congress will form the government again.”
He said rumours had been spread that the state government was responsible for the ban on coal mining by the National Green Tribunal. “The chief minister elaborated in detail actions taken by his government and the party functionaries will propagate it to the lowest level to remove such apprehension. The BJP said if it is voted to power, it would resolve the ban. They have been in power for three years. Who is stopping them?” Joshi asked.
Asking Modi to come here and announce lifting of the ban, he said, “If they (the BJP) are so confident, they should announce before the election and get the mandate. Who is stopping them? They cannot influence the voters.”
On losing party MLAs, Joshi said those with personal ambitions change sides before every election and the BJP was raking up the issue to create that space. “Wait for declaration of results in 2018.”
Mukul said the Congress would ensure the defeat of such “turncoats”. “Who are the MLAs? One by one you name them, we will ensure their defeat. We have collected inputs and we know their positions,” he said.
On the BJP’s mission to secure 40 seats, Joshi said, “They (BJP) have a number of missions. What is new in it? They can have wonderful imagination, who will stop them from imagining?”
On BJP leaders meeting church leaders, he said, “They can go to any extent to woo voters. In 2014, they said they would deposit Rs 15 lakh in every account. Have they? They said they would provide two crore jobs. Have they?”