The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) said today that there is a need to corroborate the allegations of corruption made by party members against those running the autonomous district councils in Meghalaya.
BJP national Vice-President, Chuba Ao, who is on a visit to the state, tried to downplay the charges made by his party colleagues who want a CBI inquiry into alleged corruption in the Garo and Jaiñtia Hills Autonomous District Councils (GHADC and JHADC).
The state BJP had even filed a complaint in regards to this with the state Lokayukta. However, differences in the course of action appeared to emerge, with one of the party’s two MLAs, Sanbor Shullai, expressing reservations about the Lokayukta route without first consulting with the BJP’s allies in the Meghalaya Democratic Alliance (MDA) coalition government.
Ao claimed not to have discussed the claims of corruption with state BJP President Ernest Mawrie and declined to comment on the subject when raised by reporters today.
“We need evidence (of allegations) to be correct. Let me consult with the state President. Until I know about the facts, how can I jump into it?” he said. “We are still good partners, we understand each other. I am yet to discuss (corruption) with the state President. I will have to sit with him and find out.”
However, he pointed out that the BJP has not compromised on corruption and maintains a zero tolerance policy on the subject.
Ao also brushed aside the National People’s Party’s statement recently that the BJP could leave the coalition if it isn’t happy as unimportant. But he committed the saffron party to remaining part of the MDA coalition until at least the next state elections, due in 2023.