All five Congress MLAs in Meghalaya on Tuesday extended support to the ruling Meghalaya Democratic Alliance. The development means that Congress is no longer an Opposition party in the Meghalaya Assembly as 12 of its 17 MLAs had joined the Trinamool Congress in November.

The ruling Meghalaya Democratic Alliance is led by Chief Minister Conrad Sangma’s National People Party and and has the support of the Bharatiya Janata Party.

On Tuesday, the five Congress MLAs handed over a formal letter of support to the chief minister.

“We will work together under the banner of MDA [Meghalaya Democratic Alliance] to strengthen the government in the interest of the people and the state,” Conrad Sangma had said in a tweet.

M Ampareen Lyngdoh, one of the five MLAs who announced support for the government said that the move was for the “benefit” of the people of the state and their constituencies, PTI reported. Apart from Lyngdoh, Congress’ PT Sawkmie, Mayralborn Syiem, Kimfa Marbaniang and Mohendro Rapsang offered their support to Sangma’s government.

In November, 12 of the 17 Congress MLAs in Meghalaya, including former Chief Minister Mukul Sangma, had left the party to join the Trinamool Congress, thereby making it the main Opposition party in 60-member Meghalaya Assembly.

On Tuesday, Lyngdoh said that following Mukul Sangma’s move in November, there was a “lot of confusion” in the Congress party.

“Despite the crisis, no one from the central leadership came forward to speak to us,” the East Shillong MLA told The Indian Express. “The five of us had no choice but to make this decision...” she said.

Lyngdoh claimed that the MLAs had written several letters to the party’s centra’ leadership in the last few months, but “no one listened or responded”.

Meanwhile, in a tweet, the Trinamool Congress said that “power-hungry people have officially joined hands” in Meghalaya.

Meghalaya is scheduled to go to polls in 2023.