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Goa Congress MLAs blame senior leadership of ‘gross mismanagement’, Chidambaram accuses BJP of ‘stealing’ elections

A Group Of Congress Legislators In Goa Were “upset' And Blamed The Party’s Top Leadership For The Failure To Form The Government In The Coastal State Despite Emerging As The Single Largest Party In The Assembly Polls. Even As Senior Leaders Such As Chidambaram And Digvijay Singh Accussed BJP Of 'stealing Elections' In Both Goa And Manipur.

News Nation Bureau | Edited By : Arshi Aggarwal | Updated on: 13 Mar 2017, 12:29:45 PM
Goa Congress MLAs blame senior leadership of ‘mismanagement’, Chidambaram accuses BJP of ‘stealing’ elections (File Photo)

New Delhi:

A group of Congress legislators in Goa were “upset” and blamed the party’s top leadership for the failure to form the government in the coastal state despite emerging as the single largest party in the assembly polls. Even as senior leaders such as Chidambaram and Digvijay Singh accused BJP of 'stealing elections' in both Goa and Manipur. 

“I am very upset with the way our party leaders handled the situation after the (Goa Assembly poll) results, which gave us the first right—as the single largest party—to form the government. I feel let down at the functioning of the party leaders who could not take a decision at the right time,” Vishwajit Rane, who won from the Valpoi constituency, told PTI on Monday.

He said that “gross mismanagement” by party leaders and the “delay” in choosing the Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader hurt them.

The Congress won 17 seats in Goa, only four short of the magic figure to form the government. Soon after the results threw up a hung assembly, Independent candidate Rohan Khaunte had extended support to the party.

Read | Goa Assembly elections 2017: Manohar Parrikar to take oath as CM on Tuesday

Also, informal talks were on with three legislators of the Goa Forward Party on Saturday, before the BJP stole the march on its rival after it could not muster the numbers to capture power.

Congress’ lone woman legislator Jeniffer Monserratte representing Taleigao constituency said, “Our party leaders are to be blamed for the failure to form the government.” 

“People had given us the mandate but party leaders failed to respect it. It is entirely their fault,” she said.

Similarly, senior leader and Curtorim legislator Aleixo Reginaldo Lourenco said that the people wanted the Congress to form the government but party leaders miserably failed to honour the verdict.

“Why should we blame someone for forming the government, when we failed in our responsibility? We were 17 in number,” Lourenco said.

“People wanted us to form the government and hence, they had rejected the BJP. But we failed to give people their government,” he added.

Read | Manohar Parrikar has 'hijacked' popular mandate: Digvijaya Singh

All India Congress Committee General Secretary and in-charge of party affairs in Goa Digvijaya Singh said he would speak to the Congress legislators who have expressed resentment.“Let us see. I will talk to them. I will find out,” Singh said on Monday.

On Sunday, despite being a runner-up behind the Congress, the BJP, which bagged 13 seats, pulled off a coup and staked the claim to form the next government in Goa in coalition with local outfits and Independents under Manohar Parrikar.As the saffron party outmanoeuvred the Congress in its bid to power, Singh had accused Parrikar of indulging in “horse trading and hijacking the popular mandate which was in favour of the Congress”.

Meanwhile, Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram on Monday accused the BJP of “stealing” elections in Goa and Manipur, saying a party which comes second has “no right” to form the government.

Another Congress leader, Digvijay Singh, said it was the victory of money power over people’s power.

“A party that comes second has no right to form government. BJP stealing elections in Goa and Manipur (sic),” Chidambaram said in a tweet.

The comment of the former Finance and Home Minister came after the BJP staked claim to form the government in Goa and Manipur—where it failed to emerge as the single largest party—with the support of smaller parties and some Independents.

In both these states, the Congress has emerged as the single largest party in the assembly elections results of which were declared on March 11.

In Goa, the Governor has already invited BJP leader and Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar to form the government.

In Manipur, the BJP has met the Governor and claimed that it enjoyed the support from three small NDA constituents, a Congress MLA and the lone Trinamool Congress legislator, taking its tally to 32 in the 60-member assembly.

The Congress had won 28 seats in Manipur and 17 in Goa, followed by the BJP 21 and 13 seats, respectively.

(With Inputs from PTI)

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First Published : 13 Mar 2017, 12:15:00 PM

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