By Lamphrang Nongspung | Shillong, Dec 05, 2018:
Two days after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) registered a case against Meghalaya minister Ampareen Lyngdoh and Additional Chief Secretary PS Thangkhiew vis-a-vis Education Scam case, Congress legislator Ampareen Lyngdoh on Friday raised suspicion over the timing of filing of the FIR.
PWD (Building) Minister, Ampareen Lyngdoh questioned the timing of the filing of the FIR by the CBI against her even as she expressed fear that some forces may stop her from contesting the upcoming assembly polls.
“I am praying that no forces will try to deny me the right to file for my nomination. Because like every other citizens in the country, I too have a right to represent my people. I too have the right to contest,” Ampareen said while talking to media persons today while reacting to the FIR filed by the CBI against her.
She said that it is really confusing since this happened just as the model code of conduct was to be announced.
“It foxes me well. I don’t want to say more. But I know that like any other Indian citizens in a democratic set up, I too will file my nomination and will try my best to fight for the elections to be able to serve the people as an MLA. In the last three elections that I have contested, I have given my best. I love my people, I am honored that I have been able to serve them,” the North Shillong Congress legislator said.
“I am back up by my party, I belong to a national party, a party whose leaders have all had to face these kinds of allegations, I am not a loner in the Congress party to be branded and accused of being corrupt. The law of the land will prevail, I will take this as an opportunity to prove to all that I am innocent,” Ampareen said.
Ampareen said that the judicial system in the country is a system which will protect the rights of all citizens on equal footing. “I will fight the case. I don’t know what kind of a case it will turn out to be,” she said.
ALSO READ: CBI books Ampareen Lyngdoh, P. S Thangkhiew among others for manipulation in recruitment of teachers
“I launched my campaign 19 months ago and today I am in the phase III of my campaign. I am ready to face any number of court visits. I am winding up my campaign. I will have a lot of time to attend to all the court sessions and attend to all the inquiries that are required without distracting me from my main campaign trail. I want to pray that my detractors will get use to the fact that I am here to stay and I am going to be brave,” she said.
When asked if this will affect her in the upcoming election, she said that the people have faith in her and they will prove once she filed her nominations and once the result are declared.
“I am not saying I am winning. I am just saying that I am fighting my elections,” Ampareen said said.
When asked if the BJP leaders had approached her to join the party, she said that she is a Congress man throughout.
“I am not going to say whether the people have called or not called me. I don’t like that kind of pity politics. I just want to say that a winning horse has many offers. But I have chosen the Congress,” she said.
Ampareen maintained that even if she sits in the opposition, she will operate as an active member of the political system.
“Whether I am in the Government or in the opposition, it is irrelevant to me,” the North Shillong Congress legislator said.
When asked that whether she is upset of being singled out when there are several MLAs who too had recommended names, she said that she is not a court or a judge.
“Let the court take care of all these matters. I was in the helms of affairs and I was the Education Minister. I will not response to the legal query from the media. If there is a legal query, I will reply to that query on the right forum and in the court,” Ampareen said.
She said that this has been a painful agenda in her life and for nine years.
“I would have had 10 babies in nine years. But this one child refuses to be born. This is an opportunity for me to also say something. Everybody is saying something about me. But I have never been asked to say something about myself,” she added
It may be mentioned that the CBI registered an FIR against Lyngdoh who was the then Education Minister (now labour minister), and others including unknown persons, in connection with their alleged interference in the appointment of school teachers in the state.
Along with Lyngdoh, the case was also registered against Meghalaya additional chief secretary, Parmarsan S. Thangkhiew, who is looking after home (civil defence and home guards) department, besides the directorate of elementary and mass education and unknown persons.
Lyngdoh was the education minister, and Thangkhiew was the principal secretary (education) when the teachers’ recruitment was conducted during 2008-2009.
The CBI registered the FIR on Wednesday under sections 120B, 167, 466, 408 and 34 of the Indian Penal Code for criminal conspiracy, public servant framing incorrect documents with intent to cause injury, forgery of record of court or of public register, criminal breach of trust of clerk or servant, and acts done by several persons in furtherance of common intention.