In a major blow to the ruling Congress government in Meghalaya led by Mukul Sangma, five of its MLAs including former deputy chief minister Rowell Lyngdoh, resigned from the state Assembly to join the National People's Party (NPP), an ally of the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA).
Three more legislators have also resigned from the Assembly to join the NPP, which include Remington Pyngrope from United Democratic Party and Independents Stephanson Mukhim and Hopeful Bamon.
The Congress MLAs, who gave up their assembly seats, are Sniawbhalang Dhar, Comingone Ymbon, Prestone Tynsong, Rowell Lyngdoh and Ngaitlang Dhar of Congress, Remington Pyngrope from UDP and Independents Stephanson Mukhim and Hopeful Bamon.
The development comes just ahead of assembly elections, scheduled to be held next year in February.
The Congress now has been left with 24 MLAs in the 60-member Meghalaya Assembly.
However, Sangma, with support of independent and allies, will continue to remain the Chief Minister of the state.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)