1. NCP backs Congress demand to have grand alliance for Goa polls

NCP backs Congress demand to have grand alliance for Goa polls

The Congress' demand for forming a 'grand alliance' of like-minded parties for next year's Assembly elections in Goa is gaining traction with the Sharad Pawar-led NCP today extending its support to the idea, saying such front will prevent division of votes in the BJP's favour.

By: | Panaji | Published: July 14, 2016 5:41 PM
congress on cabinet reshuffling NCP’s reaction came after some Congress leaders in Goa recently favoured a ‘grand alliance’ with like-minded parties for the polls. (Reuters)

The Congress’ demand for forming a ‘grand alliance’ of like-minded parties for next year’s Assembly elections in Goa is gaining traction with the Sharad Pawar-led NCP today extending its support to the idea, saying such front will prevent division of votes in the BJP’s favour.

“It would be in the interest of Goa if grand alliance takes place. Secular votes need to be protected from dividing…Any division of votes will give edge to BJP,” NCP Goa unit spokesperson Avinash Bhonsle told reporters here.

NCP’s reaction came after some Congress leaders in Goa recently favoured a ‘grand alliance’ with like-minded parties for the polls.

Bhonsle said, “If alliance takes place with Congress for the upcoming elections, NCP will stake its claim on six constituencies of Siolim, Cortalim, Navelim, Vasco, Nuvem and Dabolim”.

He said any political party which fights the upcoming polls on its own strength will not succeed.

“If any party says that it is (alone) going to contest in all 40 constituencies it would not succeed. BJP will be sent home if grand alliance of all like-minded parties materialises,” the NCP leader said.

NCP, part of the Congress-led government before it bit dust in 2012 elections, has no MLA in current Legislative Assembly as the party had drawn blank in the polls.

To a query, Bhonsle said the party leaders have been working in all constituencies to rebuilt the organisation.

Congress leaders like former Chief Minister Digambar Kamat and MLAs Jeniffer Monserratte, Pandurang Madkaikar and Aleixo Reginaldo Lourenco have voiced their opinion in favour of the grand alliance.

“I have expressed my opinion before the party high command. I feel that all like-minded parties should come together,” Kamat told PTI yesterday.

However, ruling BJP made light of the Congress leaders’ demand for sewing up the ‘grand alliance’, saying “the Congress should have an alliance within itself and make its party base strong”.

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