Forty-year-old Conrad Sangma was sworn in as the new Chief Minister of Meghalaya on Tuesday. Head of the National People’s Party (NPP), he took oath of office as the leader of a five-party coalition that has formed the government after the state assembly elections.
Son of former Lok Sabha Speaker and state Chief Minister Purno Agitok Sangma, Conrad represents the Tura Lok Sabha constituency in Parliament. He is the president of the NPP founded by his father in 2013.
- Born – 27 January 1978
- Education – BBA, MBA
- Politics – MLA (2008-13); Lok Sabha MP since 2016
- Positions – State cabinet minister for Finance, Power, and Tourism (2008-09)
- Other Interests – Social Work, Music, Sports
President of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Amit Shah, was among those who congratulated him. The BJP is one of the coalition partners.
Congratulations to the newly sworn-in CM of Meghalaya, Shri @SangmaConrad and his team. I am sure that the new government of Meghalaya under the central guidance of PM @narendramodi ji will act as a double engine to bring peace, progress and prosperity in the state of Meghalaya. pic.twitter.com/TlP7I2iDgU
— Amit Shah (@AmitShah) March 6, 2018
Politician, Social Worker, Music Enthusiast
Born on 27 January 1978 in Tura, West Garo Hills, Meghalaya, Conrad Sangma has a BBA degree in Entrepreneurial Management; an MBA from France, and has studied at the University of Pennysylvania and Imperial College, University of London.
Married to Mehtab Agitok Sangma, he has one daughter. His profile on the Lok Sabha website describes him as a political and social worker, and a businessperson.
He has a keen interest in music, and instruments like the guitar and piano, and has organised several musical events in the North-Eastern region. Sangma is also the president of the Meghalaya Cricket Association.
Conrad Sangma heads the PA Sangma Foundation which works in the areas of education and environment. The foundation runs four colleges in the state’s rural areas.
While he had seen his father’s electoral campaigns from close quarters, his own political career took off in 2008, when he was elected to the Legislative Assembly.
He became cabinet minister for finance, power, and tourism in the state government. In 2009, he became the leader of the Opposition in the House, a position that he held till 2013, when he lost the assembly elections.
He contested and won the bye-election for the Tura Lok Sabha seat after his father’s death in 2016. The constituency had been his father’s stronghold earlier.
How Conrad Sangma Became CM
The Congress had emerged as the single-largest party after the Meghalaya Assembly elections with 21 seats, a number which effectively came down to 20 as outgoing Chief Minister Mukul Sangma had emerged victorious from two seats. The party was, however, unable to put together a coalition so that it could stake claim to form the government.
The NPP won 19 seats, a dramatic upward swing from the two seats it had won in 2013. It subsequently received support from the United Democratic Party (six MLAS), People’s Democratic Front (four MLAs), Hill State People’s Democratic Party and the BJP (two MLAs each).
The coalition, that also has the support of an Independent MLA, decided on Sangma as its leader and he met the state Governor on Sunday to stake claim for government formation.
Conrad Sangma is known for his great connect with the people and his accessibility.
His party’s campaign for the assembly polls had focused on peace and prosperity.
#Meghalaya needs to rise to the challenge and redefine the course of history. We urge the young and old to vote for NPP and make our State a place of peace and prosperity. #NorthEastIndia #OneMeghalaya #Shillong #Meghalayaelection2018 pic.twitter.com/YfZ6jb5GYF
— National People's Party (NPP) (@nppmeghalaya) February 24, 2018
The NPP is a part of the North East Democratic Alliance (NEDA) led by the BJP but did not have a pre-poll alliance with the saffron party in Meghalaya. It is, however, a partner in the BJP government in Manipur.