Goa turns tricky; Congress, BJP look for supremacy

In Goa, Congress looks to rope in AAP, TMC support; BJP eyes return to power

In a short while from now, the results to the Assembly polls will be out. And in a shift of plan, the Congress is now trying to reach out to the non-BJP parties for a post-poll alliance. The party had fielded 37 candidates, and before the polls the grand old party had been averse to any such alliances.  With AICC Goa in-charge Dinesh Gundu Rao declaring that the party was open to joining forces with “anti-BJP parties”, including AAP and TMC, the new stance is a departure from its earlier plans.

Considering that the Congress party had even accused the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and Trinamool Congress (TMC) of working at the BJP’s instance to damage it, the new game ploy comes as surprising.

Rao had made it clear on Monday that the Congress is ready to talk with other anti-BJP parties so that they can come on board. He had made it known that the party is open to accepting any party that are not extending any kind of support to the BJP.

Congress shifts stance, looks for TMC, AAP alliance

It is a fact that the Congress party had made serious allegations against the AAP and TMC before the polls. According to the party, that were all before the polls, and that the situation has changed. On the Goan front, the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP), which had already got into a pre-election alliance with TMC, is said to be in touch with the Congress.  The Congress party, in fact, believes that it would get a good number of seats and a post-poll alliance would make its position comfortable to form the government in the state.

That explains the party’s new found love for the AAP, TMC and the smaller parties that have tie-ups with these two parties.

Though the TMC had, much ahead of the polls, called upon the Congress party leaders and the AAP top brass to come together and fight against the BJP, the two parties were very reluctant. It now remains to be seen whether Mamata Banerjee would want to heed the Congress call. The AAP also must be in a serious thinking mode as to whether it would be right to go for an alliance post-polls.

The Congress party, on the other hand, seems to have woken up late. In an event of getting a considerable number of seats but short of majority to form the government, it would be happy if AAP and TMC stand by it. But then, one never knows what the outcome will be.  

BJP kicks off measures to retain power in Goa

In the meantime, the Bharatiya Janata Party also sees an opportunity waiting to be tapped, in Goa. BJP has launched into meetings galore in a bid to make sure the power stays with the party.  Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant has been travelling to Delhi and Mumbai to brief Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Goa in-charge Devendra Fadnavis on the future course of action.

BJP is also talking to the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) and independents too so that they do not want to miss out on the majority to form the government. It looks like the party might even give in to demands for the Chief Minister’s post to a local party that would stand by it, in case they would need to have any such need for such an alliance.

All said, it looks like the Congress and the BJP would never leave any stone unturned to make Goa theirs. But it will depend on how the March 10 results would be.

Sanjeev Ramachandran

A journalist with 23 years of experience, Sanjeev has worked with reputed media houses such as Business Standard, The Ne More »
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