Congress faces tough battle in Goa as Trinamool launches attack

Panaji, Jan 14 (IANS): The Congress is facing a tough battle in Goa while trying to be ahead of the BJP as the Trinamool Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party are spoiling the grand old party's game in the state.

The Congress is trying to put up a strong face and has denied any alliance talks with the Trinamool despite speculations in the political circles. Jittered by the Congress stance, the Trinamool has launched an offensive against the Congress.

"The Trinamool has been saying that they are open to alliances, but Congress is not willing to accept and behaving like an emperor," Trinamool leader Mahua Moitra said, adding: "Need of hour in Goa is to defeat BJP - no one should be on their high horse. AITC will not, repeat not, shy away from walking the last mile."

Speculation of an alliance between the two parties was triggered after the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) chief Sharad Pawar told reporters that his party is in talks with the Congress and the Trinamool Congress for a pre-poll alliance for the upcoming elections in Goa.

The Trinamool is alleging that the Congress was not been able to form the government in the state in 2017 and could not even retain its flock of MLAs.

But, the Congress has not accepted the open offer and party General Secretary K.C. Venugopal has said that there are no talks with the Trinamool. Congress senior observer P. Chidambaram too has ruled out such a possibility.

The Congress' Election plank for Goa will consist of the following central themes -- economy, employment, education, environment, ethos of Goa," Chidambaram has said.

The Congress has got some solace with the former Ports Minister in the BJP-led government, Michael Lobo joining the party.

The party has released two lists for the polls, but had witnessed defection of MLAs and discontent in the party over the delay in the announcement of tickets as many aspirants are getting restless.



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