The cabinet today decided to chart a middle course with regards to the Garo Hills Autonomous District Council (GHADC), recommending that scheduled elections be postponed and Administrator’s Rule be implemented.
MDCs had petitioned Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma to extend the council’s term by six months and postpone elections that had to be held this month. While the government was willing to extend the term, due to the Covid-19 pandemic making it difficult to hold elections, the cabinet recommended that Governor Satya Pal Malik appoint a Deputy Commissioner or other official to take charge.
The cabinet decision came in the wake of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), a member of the state’s coalition government, demanding that the Governor should take over the GHADC if elections cannot be held this month. The BJP has one cabinet minister, Health and Family Welfare Minister AL Hek.
The BJP has also demanded that an inquiry by the CBI should be conducted into the alleged misappropriation of central government funds in the GHADC. The GHADC has 29 elected members and one member nominated by the Governor. The five-year term of the GHADC began on October 19, 2015 and will expire on October 18, 2020.