Small is not powerful
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National parties other than the Congress have not been able to make significant breakthroughs in Meghalaya's electoral politics. While the BJP has had a token presence in the state assembly after the last elections, the Left has always drawn a blank here.
Given the current picture, the Congress would appear to have a slight edge over regional parties, namely the UDP. This is not to suggest that the party will secure the absolute majority required to be able to form a government on its own. Past trends indicate, however, that the Congress could emerge from this election with enough bargaining power to dictate terms to smaller stakeholders when it comes to government formation in Meghalaya.
The writer is associate professor of political science at North-Eastern Hill University, Shillong