In what could signal the end of its long-standing alliance with the Congress in Goa, the Nationalist Congress Party on Thursday announced its decision to contest both the seats in the forthcoming Lok Sabha polls.
The NCP's announcement came hours after the Congress short-listed its candidates for both the seats, shaking the long standing seat-sharing understanding between both the parties.
The North Goa seat has traditionally been contested by the NCP, while the South Goa seat is usually contested by a Congress candidate.
"We have decided to contest both the seats. The formal announcement on the candidates is expected by March 19-20," said NCP's Goa spokesman Trojano D'Mello.
D'Mello, along with state desk in-charge Dipak Kesarkar and party state chief Nilkant Halarnkar, met party chief Sharad Pawar and senior leader Praful Patel in Mumbai on Thursday morning.
The spokesman said, "The high command has allowed us to severe ties with the Congress and go ahead with contesting from both the seats".
The Congress had on Wednesday finalised the candidature of Ravi Naik (North Goa) and Fransisco Sardinha (South Goa)..
NCP sources stated that local leaders have recommended names of the Nilkant Halarnkar and Yuri Alemao, son of former minister Joaquim Alemao, to contest from North and South Goa seats, respectively.
Image: A beach in Goa