Two-month-long hectic campaigning by political parties for the February 4 Goa Assembly election will culminate on Thursday. Campaigning ends 48 hours before the beginning of the polling process.
The election for the 40 Assembly constituencies in the State would be held across 1642 polling booths.
The coastal State is witnessing a four-cornered fight with BJP, Congress, AAP and Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party-led alliance vying for mandate to rule Goa. Besides them, small parties and Independents are also in the fray.
While AAP, which was the first political party to starts its campaigning, is contesting on 39 seats, Congress has fielded 37 candidates and is supporting other nominees on the remaining three constituencies.
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Ruling BJP has fielded candidates in 36 constituencies and is supporting four Independents in Catholic voters dominated constituencies.
The new alliance between MGP, rebel RSS leader Subhash Velingkar’s Goa Suraksha Manch and Shiv Sena is contesting on 28 constituencies.
While the MGP-led alliance and AAP have declared their Chief Ministerial candidates, Sudin Dhavalikar and Elvis Gomes, respectively, BJP and Congress have not done so.
BJP has hinted Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar might be sent back to Goa as Chief Minister if it wins the polls.
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Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP President Amit Shah, Union Ministers Rajnath Singh, Nitin Gadkari, Smriti Irani, Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore and Manohar Parrikar have addressed rallies in support of party candidates.
For Congress, Vice-President Rahul Gandhi addressed two public meetings, while Jyotiraditya Scindia, Sachin Pilot, Randeep Surjewala and others addressed scores of corner meetings for party nominees.
AAP National Convenor Arvind Kejriwal accompanied by his colleagues from Delhi Cabinet also addressed rallies.Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray and NCP President Sharad Pawar, too, addressed rallies. There are 58 Independents in the fray, down from 72 in 2012.