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After Maha, Shiv Sena proposes anti-BJP front in Goa

Source: PTI
Last updated on: November 30, 2019 00:31 IST
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A day after a Shiv Sena-Nationalist Congress Party-Congress government took over in Maharashtra, Sena leader Sanjay Raut on Friday said an anti-Bharatiya Janata Party coalition would be formed in neighbouring Goa.

Raut also spoke to leaders of the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party and Goa Forward Party, both of which are, like the Shiv Sena, former BJP allies.

While GFP leader Vijai Sardesai met Raut in Mumbai and supported the Sena's proposal, MGP's Sudin Dhavalikar also said that such a coalition was possible.

"There will be definitely an earthquake. Sardesai is here with all his MLAs. Some other MLAs, who have backed the (BJP) government, are in touch with us," Raut told reporters in Mumbai.


"After Maharashtra, (it is) Goa, there will be a big movement across the country. We will form a non-BJP front," Raut said.

"A front is being formed with Sardesai in we did in Maharashtra," the Sena MP added.

Earlier, Sardesai, GFP chief and former deputy chief minister of Goa, said they will interact with people who are ready to oust the BJP government through a Maharashtra-like model.

Sardesai made the remarks after he, along with party MLAs Vinod Palyekar and Jayesh Salgaonkar, met Raut and NCP leader Praful Patel in Mumbai.

"Regional entities fight for local people....We intend to have such (Maharashtra) type of experiment recreated in Goa to provide an alternative to anti-people government of Pramod Sawant," he said.

"We have been back-stabbed by the BJP after helping it form government in the state (after February 2017 assembly polls)," he alleged.

"Similar situation was faced by the Shiv Sena in Maharashtra...on that point we have a common ground, he added.

MGP leader Sudin Dhavalikar told PTI in Panaji that Raut called him in the morning and spoke about formation of a new coalition in Goa, and he reacted positively.

"A coalition of five parties -- Congress, MGP, Goa Forward Party, Shiv Sena and NCP -- can be formed in Goa to fight the 2022 Assembly elections," Dhavalikar said.

At present such an alliance can not pose any threat to the BJP government in Goa as opposition does not have the numbers, he added.

"Alternative government cannot be formed unless the Speaker disqualifies the members who crossed over illegally to the BJP," he said.

Meanwhile, deputy Chief Minister of Goa Manohar Ajgaonkar said Raut should stop 'day-dreaming'.

"Does he know that he has no MLAs in Goa? Please put this fact before him and then let him dream of 'miracle'," Ajgonkar told PTI.

"Sanjay Raut is forming a coalition with Vijai Sardesai. Let them have elections. They will then come to know what the people of Goa are. Even in Maharashtra, the mandate was for BJP-Shiv Sena," Ajgaonkar said.

There was no threat to Pramod Sawant government, he said.

"Looking at the work of BJP govt, 10 MLAs of Congress came to the BJP. Sawant is carrying forward the vision of (late) Manohar Parrikar. We will complete not only this five-year tenure but will also get the next five years," he said.

In the 40-member Goa Assembly, the BJP has 27 MLAs of its own, and is backed by one independent MLA.

The Congress has five MLAs, GFP three and NCP and MGP one each. Besides, there are two other independent MLAs. 

Not interested, says Cong

Hours after Raut floated the idea of a coalition of opposition parties in Goa, the state Congress ruled out joining any front to topple the BJP government in the state.

Congress's Goa unit president Girish Chodankar said his party will prefer to be in opposition rather than trying to poach ruling party MLAs to pull down the government.

"I would be happy to see the BJP government fall down in Goa. But there is no such possibility as BJP has support of 30 MLAs (in 40-member Assembly). I would rather prefer to sit in opposition than toppling government," Chodankar said.

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