PA Sangma | File Photo

The 75th birth anniversary of late PA Sangma was observed in different places, especially in Meghalaya, on September 1.

In the Northeast state, the various units of NPP paid tribute to PA Sangma and recalled his contribution to further the cause of tribal, indigenous people, minorities and the weaker sections of the society.

At Tura, NPP president and Meghalaya chief minister, Conrad Sangma along with Lok Sabha MP, Agatha Sangma paid tributes to Sangma at the graveyard where the leader was put to rest.

Party leaders converged at District Auditorium Tura to pay tribute to Sangma, recollecting their personal experiences with the revered personality. A cake to mark the occasion was cut by NPP chief, Conrad Sangma along with other leaders of the party.

Speaking on the occasion, Conrad Sangma said that the ideals and legacy of PA Sangma will live on forever.

He said that PA Sangma had demonstrated in his life that it was the welfare of the people that came first. He also informed that PA Sangma launched the NPP as a party to provide a platform for the people of the Northeast and other tribes from the country to raise their voices.

NPP chief said that it was Sangma’s vision that today NPP is one of the national parties from the Northeast that truly represents the voice of the Northeast.

Conrad Sangma further added: “A man best remembered for his simplicity and humility, PA Sangma possessed the unique feature of a ‘People’s Figure’, gathering him the admiration of his colleagues, even those that did not agree with him.”

Calling the PA Sangma an inspiring leader that broke many stereotypes, Conrad added: “PA Sangma became athe orphan boy from a small town thumping tables in the Parliament as the propagator of the Northeast. Many will remember him as the leader who brought the issues of the Northeast and the voice of the tribals to centre stage.”

The Chief Minister also exhorted the gathering to take up activities to celebrate the 75 years and the life of PA Sangma which would be a befitting tribute to this great tribal leader.

In Delhi, deputy chairman of Rajya Sabha Harivansh paid floral tributes to former speaker of Lok Sabha, PA Sangma at his portrait in the Central Hall of Parliament House on his birth anniversary. Senior officers of Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha secretariats also paid tributes.

An exhibition of books by and on PA Sangma, available in the Parliament Library, was set up in the Central Hall of Parliament House. A booklet containing the profile of PA Sangma, brought out in Hindi and English by the Lok Sabha Secretariat, was also presented to the dignitaries.

Born on September 1, 1947, at Chapahati village in the West Garo Hills district of Meghalaya, PA Sangma was a man of many parts, having been, in the course of his career, a lecturer, a lawyer and a journalist before he joined politics.

On May 23, 1996, he was unanimously elected the speaker of the 11th Lok Sabha winning support across all political parties. As the speaker, Sangma ensured that rules were observed by the members even in the midst of stormy debates.

Parliamentary democracy, he observed, meant free debate, objective deliberations and healthy criticism and it was for the speaker to ensure that these objectives were achieved.

Besides nine terms in Lok Sabha, Sangma also served in the Union cabinet in important ministries like home affairs, commerce, industry, labour, information & broadcasting and coal. Sangma passed away on March 4, 2016.

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