Press Releases


Sunday, 18th May, 2014

Victorious Congress candidate from Shillong, Vincent H Pala, downplayed the lack of the party’s support to him in the State, saying that though it was difficult to control internal rumblings in a big party like the Congress they cannot influence the outcome of an election, as the result had shown.

“I knew that there were a few Congress MLAs who were working against me in this election. But I knew that this was not going to hamper my chances of retaining the seat,” Pala said after being re-elected from the Shillong Parliamentary seat on Friday.

He said that he was aware that, unlike in the past, the margin of victory would not be a huge one this time round.

Asked if he was upset that Chief Minister Mukul Sangma had not campaigned for him even once in this election, Pala said that the Chief Minister from the start had indicated that he would not be able to campaign for him since he was going to focus on the Tura parliamentary seat.

“He (Sangma) was supposed to attend two or three of my meetings. But he could not make it due to the visit of AICC vice president Rahul Gandhi in Garo Hills,” he said.

The Congress MP expressed happiness that despite fielding a fresh and young candidate Daryl Momin, the party was able to put up a tough fight against former Lok Sabha Speaker and veteran politician Purno A Sangma. Pala admitted that the ‘face value of the Chief Minister’ played a role in this.

Asked for his reaction on the internal report of the MPCC which had indicated his defeat in the election, Pala said he could never establish if there was really any such internal report.

“I have asked MPCC president DD Lapang about this report. Even he (Lapang) denied that there was any such report. This could be only a speculation in a section of the media since the party high command would had consulted me had there been any such report,” he said.

When asked if he thought Purno would be made a Cabinet Minister, the Congress MP said that the former Lok Sabha Speaker would definitely get a Cabinet berth considering his experience and capability both as a Central minister and a public leader.

“It would be great thing for the State if he (Purno) becomes a minister,” Pala said.

Pala thought the people of the State had shown intelligence and political maturity by electing an MP each to be in the ruling party as well as the opposition in parliament.

He stated that in the next five years, he would be focussing on completion of the expansion of the Shillong Airport.

“I would also bat for the introduction of the railway project to Shillong,” Pala said while informing that he would try to establish a coaching centre in Shillong for students who are keen to appear in the civil service examinations.