Shillong, Oct 30: BJP state president Ernest Mawrie has said he will contest from West Shillong and that the party has completed setting up its organisational units in the constituency.
Mawrie said the party has already set up polling booth and mandal committees and morchas in the constituency. “People in the constituency want development. They want change. We hope that with the blessings of people, BJP will win this time,” he added.
West Shillong is currently represented by Congress’s Mohendro Rapsang. There were reports that Rapsang would join BJP. When pointed out, Mawrie said the saffron party had, in fact, approached the MLA but he refused. “So, I am preparing to contest from the seat,” he said, adding that he has been juggling campaigns and his work as the party president.
Earlier this year, many in the state BJP had questioned Mawrie’s leadership and demanded a change in guard. When pointed out that BJP leader JA Lyngdoh had accused him of not being inclusive in decision making, Mawrie said, “I took over as president in 2020 and Bah Lyngdoh said I sidelined him for four years. How can that be? I have not even completed three years. However, we have discussed about these issues thoroughly within the party. Now, our focus is to strengthen the party and perform well in the elections so that we have more MLAs.”
Mawrie informed that the BJP will field candidates in all the 60 constituencies and that selection for 50 seats has already been done. “Only a few constituencies, like Mylliem, Sohra, Siju Rongra, Nartiang, are remaining. We have to constitute mandal committees in these places,” he added.
The BJP state chief rejected any pre-poll alliance with NPP.
On South Tura, he said once Bernard Marak gets bail, he will start preparing for the polls. Marak will have a face-off with Chief Minister Conrad Sangma. “We have our own ideology and policy. So, we are fighting… we have to win,” Mawrie said.
Also read: HM Shangpliang & Rapsang may join BJP