Meghalaya CM asks Congress to consider changing its leadership
Meghalaya Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma on Wednesday took a dig at the Opposition party over criticisms relating to the power crisis in the State and asked Congress to consider changing its leadership "lest it wants to go through the same mess that MeECL is going through".
“Looking at the mess created at MeECL (Meghalaya Energy Corporation Limited), you may consider changing the leadership lest you create the same mess in your leadership," Sangma said.
Replying to questions raised on the power crisis in the State, the Chief Minister said that there are other things that contributed to the mess in MeECL.
“When unbundling took place, there was a condition where a terminal benefit to be paid to the employees, to which the then Government of Meghalaya agreed. However, the Congress government did not pay this terminal benefit and MeECL had to pay from their own pocket," Sangma said.
Reacting to the statement made by Leader of Opposition Dr Mukul Sangma to “throw out the CM and Power Minister to solve the power crisis in Meghalaya”, the Chief Minister said, “It is not in their hands to throw us out, but it is up to the MLAs and the people should decide."
It may be mentioned that the National Thermal Power Corporation Limited (NTPC) had withdrawn the load shedding regulation in Meghalaya with effect from 2:00 AM of March 10.
Earlier, participating in the debate on the Governor's address, Rangsakona MLA Zenith Sangma asked the government to provide a copy of the agreement signed between the then Congress Government and the NTPC on 2007.
"We want a copy of the agreement because it is a misleading statement made by the CM. He created misconceptions amongst people of the state. Back then, all states in NE signed the agreement. Even we fought against the high rate charged by NTPC," he said.
Meghalaya has been experiencing power supply disruption after the National Thermal Power Corporation of India (NTPC) invoked the Letter of Credit (LC) which restricted Short Term Open Access (STOA) through the North Eastern Regional Load Despatch Centre (NERLDC).
Earlier on Tuesday, the Chief Minister had said that the LC is in place, NTPC wanted a commitment from the MeECL and the Power Department to provide the break-up of the amount to be shelled out from the 2nd instalment of the first tranche of the Atma Nirbhar Bharat scheme loan of Rs 1,345 crore availed by the Government of Meghalaya.
“We had taken Rs 384 crore in the first tranche of the Rs 1300 crore approximately and, out of this Rs 384 crore, Rs 100 crore was paid directly from the REC to NTPC... The MeECL and Power Department have given a break up of tentatively how much they will give to NTPC from the 2nd instalment,” the Chief Minister said.