Agatha Sangma can heave a sigh of relief. Her job as minister of state for rural development in the UPA government and membership of the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) are safe, at least for now. Until her father Purno Sangma filed his nomination for the presidential election, all eyes in the party were on Agatha to see if she would accompany her father. Doing so would have been a breach of party discipline since Sangma senior was running for president as the BJP candidate and the NCP had declared its support for UPA nominee Pranab Mukherjee. Also, the NCP could not afford to embarrass itself further on account of the father-daughter duo. As it is, the party had turned a blind eye to the fact that the senior Sangma was using his daughter’s official residence to launch his presidential campaign against the UPA candidate. So when Agatha started openly supporting her father, the NCP issued her an ultimatum. With the father out of a job (Sangma had to quit the NCP and the Megalaya Assembly as MLA to contest) and his chances of making it to Rashtrapati Bhavan slim, Agatha appears to have taken the pragmatic decision not to challenge the UPA-NCP coalition.
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