Margao: Nationalist Congress Party’s (NCP) Benaulim MLA Churchill Alemao, along with his daughter Valanka, held a meeting with West Bengal chief minister and Trinamool Congress (TMC) supremo Mamata Banerjee at Kolkata on Monday. The meeting is believed to be a precursor to the duo’s entry into the Banerjee-led party. Speaking to TOI from Kolkata, Alemao described the meeting with Banerjee as cordial but declined to reveal what transpired. “When I met Didi during her recent visit to Goa, both of us were called to meet her in Kolkata. We had a good discussion with her today, but I am yet to take any decision about joining TMC. I will announce my decision in a couple of days,” Alemao told TOI. However, sources close to the Alemaos indicated that the Benaulim MLA is inclined to make the switch to TMC provided his negotiations with Banerjee work in his favour. While tickets to both — for himself from Benaulim, and for Valanka from Navelim — is likely to be Alemao’s primary demand, his close associates hinted that he could be eyeing the state party president’s post for himself in the bargain. As a source chose to put it, “The terms, conditions and modalities for joining TMC are still being worked out.” Alemao had set a deadline of November 29 for his party leadership to decide on the alliance with Congress, failing which, he had said, he would be free to take his own decision. His growing propensity towards TMC was evident recently when he described Banerjee as “a firebrand fighter, just like me”. “Didi is a big political force to reckon with,” he had said. Soon after Luizinho Faleiro resigned as Navelim MLA to join TMC two months ago, Alemao had announced that Valanka would be contesting from Navelim. Sources said that Alemao gave a serious thought to crossing over to TMC only on Faleiro’s prodding. Alemao had trounced Faleiro in Navelim in the 2007 polls contesting on the Save Goa Front party. In the 2012 polls, all four from the Alemao family were trounced by first-time contestants — Churchill was defeated by BJP-backed independent candidate Avertano Furtado in Navelim, his brother Joaquim lost to BJP’s Subhash Naik in Cuncolim, Valanka was defeated by Goa Vikas Party’s Caetano Silva in Benaulim, and Joaquim’s son Yuri lost to BJP’s Subhash Phal Dessai in Sanguem. In the 2017 polls, however, while both Valanka and Yuri didn’t contest, Churchill won from Benaulim on the NCP ticket, but Joaquim, contesting as an independent, lost. Churchill is not new to TMC. He had unsuccessfully contested on TMC from the south Goa parliamentary seat in 2014.
Margao: Trinamool Congress’ Goa in-charge Mahua Moitra on Saturday accused chief minister Pramod Sawant of being a puppet in the hands of BJP organising secretary Satish Dhond who, she said, was actually controlling the affairs of the state government. “In Goa, there is no mukhya mantri. There is a maha mantri whose name everybody is scared to take. (He is) Satish Dhond, referred to as the sanghatan mantri. Sawant is a puppet, Dhond is controlling everything. How is this person, who is not a minister, who hasn’t taken oath of secrecy, entering government meetings?” Moitra alleged while addressing reporters. Accusing BJP of nepotism, Moitra said that several projects in the tourism sector were being awarded to firms which are “in close cohoots” with Dhond. “Nobody dares to ask these questions in Goa because everybody is mixing with everybody.” Moitra further called into question the failure of both the Goa MPs in raising “a single Goa-specific issue” in parliament. She hit out against the government over the Rs 49 cr Kala Academy renovation controversy. She also demanded the demolition of the illegal structure built at an ASI-protected heritage site in Old Goa. “In April 2021, the existing structure, or the hut, was demolished and today, in November, an 840 sqm villa has been set up by Manish Munot who is associated with the BJP. I am asking this to the chief minister and the Prime Minister, how are you allowing this?” she said. Over the three Centre-sponsored linear infrastructure projects, Moitra cited the Central Empowered Committee report to the Supreme Court which states that there is “no justification of these projects in the protected area.” Alleging that all other parties have failed to take any issue to their successful resolution, Moitra said “What is the point of raising issues when nothing is being done about it. Congress has done nothing all these years. They raise an issue, but nothing happens on ground. Other parties in Goa are in cahoots with BJP. I promise to raise all these Goa-specific issues in Parliament next week.”
Mahua Moitra alleged that all political parties in Goa were in cahoots with the ruling BJP. (File)Panaji: Trinamool Congress (TMC) leader Mahua Moitra today alleged that all political parties in Goa are in cahoots with the ruling BJP, and also accused the Congress of doing nothing all these years.Addressing a press conference, Ms Moitra also slammed BJP chief JP Nadda, saying that since his party was rejected in West Bengal, he was targeting the TMC in Goa.The Mamata Banerjee-led TMC has decided to contest the Assembly polls in BJP-ruled Goa, which is just a few months away."All the parties in Goa are in cahoots together...If you want to defeat the BJP, the Congress has not done nothing all these years," she claimed."(Senior Congress leader) P Chidambaram coming here one day and walking on the road is not going to do something. I am here everyday. Mr Chidambaram comes here for a day and goes," TMC's Lok Sabha member said.She was referring to the Congress's rally against inflation taken out recently in the state, in which Mr Chidambaram, who is Congress's election observer for Goa, took part.Ms Moitra talked about three issues in Goa - destruction of environment for three linear projects in Mollem forest area, renovation of Kala Academy project and illegal structure at archaeologically protected area of Old Goa.She said that all the political parties in Goa have not done anything on these issues."Congress raises every issue, but we have not seen sustained question and answers from them," she alleged.Ms Moitra said that TMC is here to question the BJP in a sustained manner and put pressure on it."TMC will raise these issues in Parliament," she stated.When asked about Mr Nadda's recent statement against the TMC over its rule in West Bengal, Ms Moitra asked, "JP Nadda ji hai kaun? (Who is JP Nadda?)...He is president of some national party, why should we comment on him."Mr Nadda, during his recent visit to Goa, had alleged that the law and order situation in West Bengal is deteriorating under the Mamata Banerjee government.PromotedListen to the latest songs, only on JioSaavn.comMs Moitra further said, "Mr Nadda went to Bengal and made accusations. But what happened? People of Bengal rejected him. Now, he can't go to Bengal, so he is commenting in Goa. So why should I comment on some other party's national president? I wish him good luck." (Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
The TMC seems to be dividing the secular votes and helping BJP, Dinesh Gundu Rao said.Panaji: The Congress accused Trinamool Congress (TMC) of helping the ruling BJP by dividing secular votes in Goa where Assembly elections will be held in the next few months.Addressing Congress workers at the Thivim constituency on Saturday evening, hours after Goa Forward Party leader Kiran Kandolkar joined TMC, AICC Goa desk incharge Dinesh Gundu Rao said, “It's sad to note that at a time when Goans, in general, are anxiously waiting to end the BJP misrule, concerted attempts are being made to divide the anti-BJP vote”.The TMC seems to be dividing the secular votes and helping BJP, he said."The new parties that have entered Goa don't seem to understand the prevailing public mood and sentiment against the BJP. They also seem to have failed to gauge the public sentiment that like-minded parties should come together in 2022,” he added.When the Congress and other like-minded parties have been trying to come together with a one-point agenda to defeat the BJP in 2022, these new parties seem to be on a mission to divide the anti-BJP votes, Rao said in an apparent reference to Congress veteran Luizinho Faleiro switching sides to TMC, which nominated him to Rajya Sabha.“These parties first lured Congress leaders and workers with positions. Now, they are targeting the regional parties by poaching their candidates. People are watching. They are mature enough to see the game plan of these new parties that a division of votes will benefit the ruling party," he added.In the 2017 Goa Assembly polls, the Congress had won the highest 17 seats in the 40-member House restricting the BJP at 13. However, the BJP allied with regional parties- GFP and MGP- to form a government under the late Manohar Parrikar.PromotedListen to the latest songs, only on JioSaavn.comOver years, the Congress' strength dwindled to four as many MLAs switched over to the ruling BJP. Faleiro recently joined the Mamata Banerjee-led party.(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
"It is TMC's aim to ensure that Goans get good governance," Luizinho Faleiro said.Panaji: Trinamool Congress party leader Luizinho Faleiro on Thursday said Goa does not need to ape Gujarat or Bengal to solve its problems."Goa does not want the Gujarat model or the Bengal model, but needs a Goa model, and that will happen only if the people of Goa decide what''s best for Goa," he said at a press conference."It is TMC's aim to ensure that Goans get good governance," he added.Mr Faleiro also slammed his detractors who have said his nomination to the Rajya Sabha was a "retirement package".He had not retired, and he wanted to raise the coastal state''s issues in Parliament, he said.PromotedListen to the latest songs, only on JioSaavn.comMr Faleiro thanked party chairperson Mamata Banerjee for giving him the opportunity and added that he will not make compromises, nor make empty promises.He also accused the Congress of being involved in "the wholesale business of selling MLAs and dividing votes".
Panaji: Former Congress spokesperson who was expelled from the primary membership of the party, Trajano Dâmello along with a few others joined All India Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Friday. Vice president of North Goa district Gautam Mandrekar, district committee member Dilip Kudnekar, and Shirgao BJP committee member Sanmesh Gaonkar also joined TMC in the presence of former Goa CM Luizinho Faleiro who recently was elected as Rajya Sabha member from Kolkota, and Goa in-charge Mahua Moitra. TNN Two days ago former district judge and state information commissioner Afonso Araujo and former sarpanch and members of Borim panchayat joined TMC. Some artistes who are now members of the party held a musical programme in Curtorim recently
Panaji: A day after BJP minister Michael Lobo raised the ante over the controversial structure that is coming up close to a heritage site in Old Goa, and demanded action from chief minister Pramod Sawant, Congress, Aam Aadmi Party and All India Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Friday demanded that the approvals given for the construction be revoked immediately. “We will oppose the construction tooth and nail and pressurise the BJP government to revoke all permissions granted by supporting the ongoing agitation. If not, ready for a mega protest,” Congress spokesperson Tulio D’Souza told reporters. D’Souza said if Congress forms the government, it will revoke all permissions given to the project. Also, the construction should be demolished and the land restored to its original form, he said. Chodankar said Congress was the first to raise objections about the illegalities of the project, but kept away on the request of some prominent citizens. “We agreed to the people’s request that the issue should not be politicised,” he said. How could the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) issue permission for the project, he questioned. AAP state convener Rahul Mhambre visited those on a hunger strike and demanded a written assurance to revoke permission to the structure. Stating that the bungalow belongs to a fashion designer and a BJP functionary, Mhambre alleged that such projects are getting cleared by the state government because Sawant is a very weak chief minister and a puppet in the hands of the Centre. TMC’s Goa in-charge and Lok Sabha MP, Mahua Moitra on Friday visited the ongoing ‘satyagrapha’ against the construction and promised to raise the issue in the Parliament when it resumes on November 29. She said a 51sqm hut within the ASI protected area has been converted into a 800sqm villa. “This is how the ‘double engine sarkar’ works,” she said.
Margao: Since securing the Davorlim zilla panchayat (ZP) seat — a part of the Navelim assembly constituency — at the ZP elections held last year, BJP has been fancying its chances of winning the Navelim seat in the 2022 polls. With Luizinho Faleiro quitting as Congress MLA to join Trinamool Congress (TMC) and thus vacating the political space in Navelim, the altered political situation has bolstered the ambitions of the saffron party to breach the Congress citadel. With Faleiro having represented Navelim constituency for close to 30 years, political observers say that the former chief minister has cultivated a large loyal voter base. It is on the strength of these assured votes that Faleiro had managed to stage a comeback to local politics in 2017, after almost a decade of isolation following his defeat in the 2007 assembly polls. Faleiro won the seat polling over 8,000 votes, more than half of which are believed to be his “personal loyalty votes”. Political observers say that the behaviour of this large chunk of votes, in the event Faleiro decides not to contest from Navelim, will be crucial in determining the outcome of the 2022 polls. While Faleiro has maintained that he will take a “right decision in the interest of the people of Navelim”, political observers decipher the statement to mean that he may prop up a candidate of his choice on the TMC ticket. Besides, sources say, that with nearly a quarter of the total electorate from Navelim belonging to the Muslim community, concentrated largely in Rumdamol, Davorlim, and Ravanfond areas, political parties are working out strategies to woo these voters. BJP, party sources said, is also toying with the idea of fielding a Muslim face from Navelim with an eye on these minority votes. As it’s likely to be a multi-cornered fight in Navelim, the outcome will be determined largely on the strength of a candidates’ personal appeal in addition to his/her party’s traditional votes. Satyavijay Naik, who contested as its candidate for the Navelim ZP polls, its Davorlim ZP member Ulhas Tuyekar, its Navelim mandal vice-president, Paresh Dessai, besides party spokesperson Urfan Mulla, are strong claimants of the ticket. While NCP Benaulim MLA Churchill Alemao is seeking a NCP ticket for his daughter Valanka from Navelim — NCP-Congress alliance talks are learnt to have got stuck over this demand — political observers don’t rule out Valanka contesting on a TMC ticket or as an independent if the alliance deal doesn’t work out on Alemao’s terms. Alemao had trounced Faleiro in Navelim in the 2007 polls contesting on the Save Goa Front party, and has a significant voter base in this constituency. He has now given a deadline of November 29 for the NCP leadership to decide on the alliance, failing which he would be free to take his own decision. Avertano Furtado, who had contested against Faleiro in the 2017 polls, is now in the Congress camp and its probable candidate, while AAP functionary Pratima Coutinho, who had contested as a Congress candidate in the Navelim ZP bypolls held earlier this year, is being projected as the AAP candidate for 2022 assembly polls.
Panaji: BJP national president J P Nadda on Thursday said Goa is nearing the 100% vaccination mark of both doses under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, which has allowed tourism to grow in Goa. Nadda said that chief minister Pramod Sawant has done well in carrying on the legacy of former defence minister Manohar Parrikar, who had dreamt of a golden Goa. Sawant successfully continued with Parrikar’s development agenda, Nadda said, adding that the PM has a special affection for Goa. He was addressing karyakarta melavas in Valpoi and Bicholim. “Goa is one of the first states to have completed 100% coverage of the first dose of vaccine and very soon we will see to it that BJP workers go house-to-house to ensure that Goa achieves 100% coverage of second dose also. The impact this is having is that tourism, which was on the decline during the pandemic, is growing. This is because Pramod Sawant and (health minister) Vishwajit Rane have been slogging for this,” Nadda said. He said that Goa’s tourism footfalls have gone up from 15% during the early days of the pandemic to 80%. “I evoke the memory of Manohar Parrikar today, who dreamt of a golden Goa. He dedicated his life for the people of Goa so that there is development, progress and betterment here. I remember when he inspected the Atal Setu with life support during his illness and had asked ‘how’s the josh?’. I want to assure his ‘atma’ that every worker of the BJP will maintain the ‘josh’,” Nadda said. He said new parties are knocking on Goa’s doors and trying to lure the people. “Ask them what state West Bengal is in today? In Delhi, all facilities are being provided by the Centre and the government there is only claiming credit,” he said, criticising TMC and AAP.
Banerjee said on Wednesday that she had no plans to meet Congress president Sonia Gandhi this visit, and added that it isn't constitutionally mandated to Gandhi every time she is in the capital. (PTI File Photo)West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and raised the issue of the BSF’s territorial jurisdiction in the state, demanding that it be withdrawn. However, Banerjee said that she had no plans to meet Congress president Sonia Gandhi during this visit, and added that it isn’t ‘constitutionally mandated’ to meet Gandhi every time she is in the capital.“This time I sought time only from the prime minister. The leaders are all busy with Punjab polls. Work is first… Why should we meet Sonia every time? It is not constitutionally mandated," she said when reporters asked if she was meeting Sonia Gandhi, reported PTI.During her meeting with the prime minister, she told Modi that the federal structure of the country should not be disturbed in any way. Speaking to the media after the meeting, Banerjee said that she invited the prime minister to inaugurate the Global Business Summit which would be held in West Bengal next year. Banerjee shares a good relationship with the Congress president. However, Goa has become a bone of contention between the two. The exodus of key Congress leaders and then joining TMC, and the Bengal party’s foray into Goa politics have become pain points between the two parties, and therefore between the two leaders.Mamata Indicates Expansion Plans for TMC Underway, Trips to Varanasi, Mumbai in Pipeline'No Need to Join, Already With Her': Subramanian Swamy Meets CM Mamata Banerjee in DelhiThe latest jolt to Congress came in Meghalaya where 12 of its 17 MLAs, including former chief minister Mukul Sangma, joined Trinamool Congress. The TMC has witnessed a steady stream of leaders joining its ranks after quitting from Congress in the last few months.In September, former Goa chief minister Luizinho Faleiro joined TMC after quitting Congress. Within a few months time, Congress MP from Assam’s Silchar and ex-president of All India Mahila Congress, Sushmita Dev also embraced TMC. After joining TMC, both received Rajya Sabha seats.Congress leader Kirti Azad and former Haryana Congress president Ashok Tanwar also recently joined TMC.TMC has been on an expansion spree welcoming in Meghalaya, under its wing, 12 MLAs, including former chief minister Mukul Sangma, much to the chagrin of Congress.Read all the Latest News, Breaking News and Coronavirus News here. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Telegram.
QUEPEM/VASCO: BJP central observer and former chief minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis on Tuesday likened Congress to a small car â a âNanoâ party â with only four MLAs as its occupants. âBut unity being lacking among them, they are driving in different directions,â Fadnavis said. âIf Congress cannot manage their four MLAs, how will they form the government with 21 MLAs?â he said while addressing two workers meetings, first at deputy chief minister Chandrakant Kavlekarâs residence in Betul, and later at Vasco. Referring to Kavlekar as a true leader of the masses, he said that his defecting from Congress with 10 MLAs left the party more desperate. Kavlekar will win the coming election with a thumping majority, Fadnavis said, adding that it was the deputy ministerâs connection with the masses that prompted him to request him to organise a meeting at his residence at such short notice. The BJP central observer hit out at both Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and Trinamool Congress (TMC), alleging that the latter was an âextortion industryâ. If the people of Goa elect TMC then they will destroy the image of the state, which is considered an international tourist destination, he said. Attacking Delhi CM and AAP national convener Arvind Kejriwal, he said that Delhi is a half state and that the AAP government looks after only the health, education and electricity department, while the rest of the departments and infrastructure work are handled by the central government. He reminded the gathering that it was former chief minister Manohar Parikar who had brought Goaâs infrastructure to international standards. âBJP will follow his legacy,â Fadnavis said. Party president Sadanand Tanavade and NRI commissioner Narendra Sawaikar, among others were present at the meeting. Meeting workerâs at Mormugao, Fadnavis urged the party workerâs to strive hard to achieve satisfactory success in the upcoming assembly elections.
MARGAO: When BJP decimated Congress by engineering the defection of 10 of its 15 MLAs, including three from Salcete constituencies, in July 2019, the party may have hoped that the move would enable it to paint Salcete saffron. Far from that, over two years later, BJP finds itself in an even more pitiable situation. It has even lost the toehold that it had seemingly garnered in some of the onstituencies with former chief minister Manohar Parrikarâs 2012 Mission Salcete. The Catholic-dominated Salcete taluka with eight assembly constituencies has always held the key to the overall outcome of the elections. Though BJP has always remained a pariah for Salcete, which has steadfastly stayed loyal to Congress, Parrikarâs strategy of supporting independent Catholic candidates in some of these constituencies yielded some success in 2012. âMission Salcete was nothing but a very clever strategy by Parrikar to keep Congress engaged in guarding its Salcete citadel so that BJP could focus in other talukas where it had more chances of winning,â a political commentator observed. âThe idea worked at that time as people had trust in Parrikar. Thereâs a serious trust deficit in the current government.â Of the three constituencies represented by its turncoat MLAs â Filipe Neri Rodrigues in Velim, Wilfred DâSa in Nuvem, and Clafacio Dias in Cuncolim â only Dias has staked claim for the BJP ticket. While Rodrigues is hesitant about contesting as BJP candidate, DâSa has publicly announced that he would prefer to contest as an independent than on a BJP ticket. Consequently, BJP finds itself in troubled waters as its efforts in strengthening even its insignificant existence in these two constituencies have come to naught. âA partyâs aspirations canât be relied on borrowed strength. It never had a base in these two constituencies. Defections led to an increase in the partyâs numerical strength, but not in its popularity,â a political observer said. In constituencies of Margao and Fatorda, the only majority-dominated constituencies of Salcete, BJP finds itself on a backfoot. If its exercise for scouting for a new face to take on Margao MLA Digambar Kamat hasnât yielded the desired results yet, in Fatorda, the party is facing a threat of rebellion with several of its senior party workers being opposed to former MLA Damodar Naikâs candidature this time. In Navelim, Avertano Furtado, whom the BJP had supported in the last two assembly elections to contest as independent, is now in the Congress camp and also its probable candidate. Despite its ambitions to field its own candidate in Navelim for the 2022 polls, BJP appears to have no formidable candidate to take on the challenge of altered political equations in the constituency wrought by Luizinho Faleiroâs exit from Congress and Benaulim MLA Churchill Alemaoâs aspirations of fielding his daughter Valanka from Navelim. In Benaulim, notwithstanding its efforts in the past, BJP hardly stands a chance, while in Curtorim, BJP is weighing the option of fielding Anthony Barbosa, its South Goa ST morcha vice-president. Though the presence of AAP and Trinamool Congress in Salcete is unlikely to affect BJPâs prospects, political observers feel multi-cornered fights in several Salcete constituencies could be poised for some interesting political spectacle that could have a significant bearing on the overall 2022 poll outcome.
Margao: NCPâs Benaulim MLA Churchill Alemao has set a November 29 deadline for his party leadership to decide on an alliance with Congress, failing which, he said, he would be free to take his own decision. âIf thereâs no alliance, I will take my decision,â he told reporters. âI will take a decision in consultation with my voters. For the last eight months we have been trying for an alliance. If Congress wants to go alone, itâs their decision.â Though he didnât spell out his options, Alemao was effusive in his praise for Trinamool Congress (TMC) supremo Mamata Banerjee. âMamata is like me, a firebrand fighter. Didi is a big political force to reckon with,â the MLA said. Alemao also opined in favour of an alliance of Congress, NCP and TMC to take on the might of BJP.
Panaji: Goa Forward Party president Vijai Sardesai said Kiran Kandolkarâs move to join the All India Trinamool Congress is an unexpected blow for his party. He said GFP was confident that Kandolkar and his wife Kavita could have contested the 2022 assembly elections from Aldona and Tivim as part of the alliance agreement. âKiran Kandolkarâs resignation from the party is shocking and it was unexpected,â said Sardesai. Despite the sudden move by Kandolkar to ditch GFP, Sardesai said he understood the motives behind the exit. âHe seems to be having doubts about whether he would be getting a ticket in a possible alliance that we may have in the future. I have given him respect in our party and I was confident that I would give him what he wanted,â said Sardesai. The GFP chief said that changing political allegiances are expected ahead of the elections, especially when new political parties enter the fray. âHe must have given it due thought and it was quite possible that he had doubts about whether he would get the ticket for his wife and himself in a possible alliance. I am quite confident that winnable candidates would not be denied tickets in the alliance,â said Sardesai.
Panaji: In a major jolt for Goa Forward Party (GFP), its working president Kiran Kandolkar abruptly put in his papers and joined the All Indian Trinamool Congress (TMC) party on Saturday. Kandolkar, who joined TMC along with his wife Kavita, said he will contest the 2022 assembly elections from Aldona while his wife will contest from Tivim. Kandolkar told reporters that Congressâ indecisiveness and delay tactics compelled him to leave GFP and join the Mamata Banerjee-led party. The move by senior Congress election observer P Chidambaram to campaign door-to-door in Aldona constituency appears to have been the final straw for Kandolkar. âFor the past few months, talks of an alliance with Congress have been on, but as per my information, Congress is not ready to let me contest the Aldona seat,â said Kandolkar. âIt is not serious about defeating BJP, which is why it is not declaring its candidate or deciding on the alliance.â Shedding more light on the rationale behind his decision, the former Tivim MLA said the poll strategy prepared by Prashant Kishorâs Indian political action committee (IPAC) convinced him that TMC will form the next government in Goa. In October, Kandolkar had sparked a furore within BJP ranks after he said Goa needs to bring âDurgaâ from West Bengal to eliminate the âBhasmasurâ BJP government from the state. Kandolkar, who is a former BJP MLA, said at least two BJP MLAs and 40 GFP office-bearers are in touch with him. He also said that many former BJP lawmakers who are miffed with the functioning of the saffron party, could join TMC in the coming days. Kandolkarâs children also joined TMC along with the sarpanchs of Tivim, Assonora, Revora and Nadora. âI have decided to leave GFP, but I would like to say that I am not leaving because of Vijai Sardesai, but because I donât trust Congress and their alliance promises. Congress loses because it declares its candidate very late and the person does not get time to campaign. My work experience with Vijai Sardesai is good, but I feel that Congress is going to betray him,â said Kandolkar. Earlier in the day, former Congress North Goa district general secretary Shankar Phadte joined TMC along with the block-level leadership of the partyâs Porvorim unit, which includes 10 executive members. Kandolkar and Phadte were inducted into the party in the presence of AITC national vice-president Luizinho Faleiro and Lok Sabha MP Mahua Moitra. Both said that TMC is the only party that can take on BJP in Goa and at the Centre.
Panaji: Releasing documents to prove that chief minister Pramod Sawant has obtained a lease for a stone quarry at Dodamarg, Maharashtra, All India Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Friday demanded a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Directorate of Enforcement (ED) into Sawantâs assets. TMC questioned how Sawant was able to obtain a stone mining lease in November 2019. The allegations against Sawant were made by TMC Goa in-charge Mahua Moitra, who launched a two-pronged attack against the state BJP government. Moitra said that Sawant failed to restart mining operations in Goa and also failed to prevent diversion of water from the Mhadei basin by Karnataka. Citing a letter from the office of the deputy regional director of Maharashtra, dated November 7, 2019, Moitra said, âThe letter clearly shows that Pramod Sawant, as the chief minister of Goa, got a mine in his name in Sindhudurg district in Maharashtra. But the big question is, where did he get the money to lease a mine?â Maharashtraâs directorate of geology and mining has granted Sawant permission to mine a 1.2ha stone quarry at Talekhol village in Dodamarg-Sindhudurg. âWe demand a CBI and ED probe into the source of funds used by Pramod Sawant to secure the mine. I would also like the Prime Minister to order a disproportionate assets inquiry against Pramod Sawant,â she said. TMC said that Sawant managed to obtain a mine for himself, but has done little to restart Goaâs iron ore mines, which have been shut for three years. After taking over as the chief minister, Sawant had said that he will get mining started in three months, Moitra said. On the Mhadei water dispute, Moitra said that Karnataka has started diverting more water than the neighbouring state is supposed to. âDespite winning, most of the water from the basin has been diverted to Karnataka,â she said.
Panaji: Terming it as a victory for farmers, all the opposition parties on Friday said that Prime Minister Narendra Modiâs decision to repeal the three contentious farm laws is driven by fears of an electoral defeat. Welcoming the Prime Ministerâs announcement, political parties said that it is time for BJP to start listening to the people. Congress and Goa Forward Party (GFP) said that Modiâs announcement sends a signal to the opposition that peopleâs power works. âBJP has feedback that they will lose the next round of elections very badly in five states, including Goa. It is the fear of losing elections that has impelled the Prime Minister to announce that he has decided to repeal the farm laws,â former Union finance minister and AICC senior election observer P Chidambaram said. Describing Modi as a âdictator in the garb of a democratâ, Chidambaram said that the move to repeal the three farm laws proves that in a healthy democracy, âconsultation, discussion and parliamentary debateâ is vital. Three weeks earlier, Modi in a speech in Uttar Pradesh said that anybody who opposes the farm laws is anti-national, they are speaking for big farmers and that they will never withdraw the farm laws. âFor this stubborn government to today announce that they will repeal the farm laws means that they know that they are losing the next round of elections. This is a lesson for the people. This government does not fear democracy and Parliament. It fears losing elections,â Chidambaram said. GFP president Vijai Sardesai said that repealing the three farm laws will be a victory for all people. âEven after being called terrorists and Maoists and subjected to inhumanly oppressive physical and mental force, our farmers have shown India and the world that the arrogance and tyranny of BJP can be and will be eradicated,â he said. He said that a similar unity is required to defeat BJP in Goa. Opposition leader Digambar Kamat also welcomed the Prime Ministerâs statements. âAfter the most insensitive, irresponsible and failed BJP government at the Centre started feeling the heat of peopleâs anger, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said he will withdraw the three anti-farmer laws. This is the beginning of the withdrawal of BJP from across India,â Kamat said. TMC MP Mahua Moitra said that all the opposition parties had consistently urged the Centre to take the laws back. âThey criticised us saying that we are anti-national. So many farmers died. The farmers have been protesting for one-and-a-half years through summer and winter. Now when UP elections have come, their brain has started moving,â Moitra said.
Panaji: Criticising Congress for accommodating âtraitorsâ, Aldona MLA Glen Ticloâs brother and former Congress general secretary Wilbur Ticlo joined the All India Trinamool Congress (AITC) on Thursday. Wilbur, who was earlier with Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and who till recently was the Congress general secretary, jumped ship amidst indications that Porvorim MLA Rohan Khaunte is cosying up to the Congress for the 2022 assembly elections. Wilbur, who is eyeing the Porvorim constituency, said Congress and BJP have messed up Goa and that West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee is the best bet for the state. Meanwhile, former chief minister and Navelim MLA Luizinho Faleiro hit out at criticism that his nomination to the Rajya Sabha is a âretirement packageâ saying he had taken the step to raise Goa-specific issues in Parliament.
Panaji: Former deputy chairperson of Margao Municipal Council and South Goa district Congress general secretary Ethel Lobo joined the All India Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Wednesday in the presence of member of parliament and TMC Goa in-charge Mahua Moitra. Lobo, who was with Congress for more than 30 years, said she will contest the 2022 assembly elections from Fatorda constituency. Lobo, who said that she is “pained” with the functioning of Congress, said that state Congress president Girish Chodankar never cooperated with her regarding decisions about the Fatorda constituency. Lobo is a vocal critic of Goa Forward Party president Vijai Sardesai. “I am deeply pained with the way Congress treated me. Congress is no longer the party that it was. They treated me like a doormat and they had no place for a woman. All pro-BJP people are in Congress today,” Lobo said. She said she informed Congress senior election observer P Chidambaram about her grievances, but he brushed her aside. Interestingly, a video clip went viral on Wednesday in which South Goa Congress MP Francisco Sardinha is reportedly seen instigating workers from the Fatorda Congress block to leave the party en masse and join other political parties. Lobo, who is a close aide of Sardinha, said that Sardinha’s statements in the video had nothing to do with her joining TMC. In the clip, which has been widely shared on social media platforms, Sardinha is also heard calling Chodankar a “chor”. This is not the first time that the South Goa MP has criticised his own state party president.
Valpoi: Chief minister of Delhi and national convener of Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Arvind Kejriwal said that both BJP and Congress have a mutual understanding and are looting people by forming government alternately. He called for change in Poriem constituency saying that sitting MLA Pratapsingh Rane has done nothing for the people of his constituency despite being the legislator for the past 50 years and chief minister for 15 years. Kejriwal was speaking at the induction ceremony of BJP’s Vishwajit Krishnarao Rane into AAP on Tuesday at Saleli-Sattari. “Common men need good education, free medicare facilities besides other basic needs. In Delhi we have set up good government schools, are providing free 24-hour power supply, employment facilities, etc, and we assure the people of Goa that the same model will be framed in the state,” he said. “Trinamool Congress (TMC), Congress and many other parties approached me with offers but I thought I would join a party with a good vision. Looking at the Delhi model, we can say that Goa will get a facelift,” Vishwajit Krishnarao Rane said. “If a person governs for 50 years in a particular constituency it should be one of the more developed constituencies in the state, but Poriem is the least developed in Goa,” he said. He said that Pratapsingh’s son is luring people in the name of jobs. AAP’s Ganpat Gaonkar said that they will definitely win the Poriem seat. “If development needs to take place, there is need for a corruption-free government,” he said. Vice president Mahadev Naik said that AAP is the only party that will work for the people. During the pandemic, where the state government failed to reach out to the people, AAP workers reached out to people, he said.
Margao: Former Navelim Congress MLA Luizinho Faleiro and present national vice president of Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Sunday said that once he is elected member of the Rajya Sabha, he would take up issues concerning Goa and be the voice of Goans in the Parliament. He said he was yet to take a decision about contesting the 2022 assembly election from Navelim constituency. âMy interest will always be Goa and Navelim constituency. I will take an appropriate decision in the interest of the party, of my people and of Goa,â Faleiro said when asked if he would contest from Navelim for the assembly polls. TMC has nominated Faleiro for the Rajya Sabha seat from Bengal left vacant following the resignation of Arpita Ghosh nearly two months ago. He will file his Rajya Sabha nomination papers on Tuesday for the elections to be held on November 29. With TMCâs tally in the Bengal assembly rising to 218, Faleiroâs passage to the Rajya Sabha is but a formality. Speaking to TOI from Kolkata, Faleiro said that upon his entry into Rajya Sabha, âGoa will find a voice in the Parliament as TMC is the second largest opposition party.â Special status for Goa, recovering Rs 35,000 crore mining loot, and the three linear projects are the issues he will raise in the Parliament, he said. His nomination to the Parliament triggered speculation that it was a âbroad hintâ the party might not field him in the 2022 Goa assembly polls. Though Faleiro said he was currently undecided about contesting from Navelim, sources said that TMC was considering fielding a candidate propped up by Faleiro from Navelim.
Panaji: Formally jumping into Goaâs electoral fray, Revolutionary Goans (RG) on Sunday announced that it will contest the 2022 assembly elections under the Goa Su-Raj party banner. RG founder Manoj Parab made the announcement at an event at Azad Maidan in the state capital and stated that the party will field candidates in every constituency. âRevolutionary Goans will contest election on Goa Su-Raj party name. This is not a seat-sharing adjustment or tie-up of any compromise or setting. Here we, Revolutionary Goans, will remain as RG but as we need a political party and single symbol to contest the elections, we have decided to do it with Goa Su-Raj party,â Parab said. RG had applied for registration as a party seven months back but have not received recognition as yet. Parab also announced that he had met with Aam Aadmi Partyâs national convener Arvind Kejriwal and political strategist Prashant Kishor, who is currently lobbying for Trinamool Congress. âToday the time has come to say that Goans are not helpless, we are revolutionary. We will save our Goa. It is time for Goans to get out of the slavery to people from other states. There are dalals today who are running from one party to the other. They donât have principles, they donât have an ideology,â Parab said. Parab acknowledged that he used to consider Kishor as his political guru and had approached him seeking assistance from Indian Political Action Committee (I-PAC) for the upcoming polls. Parab said that Kishor brushed him aside and said that RG will not win more than 500 votes. âThese parties from Delhi and other places have treated us as dirt,â said Parab. âWe will win the elections and show them.â
Panaji: After announcing three candidates, including himself, in Bardez taluka without naming any party, ports minister Michael Lobo said that he will announce more names for the upcoming assembly elections in the coming days and if BJP does not listen to him, options are open. “We will announce candidates soon. We are declaring names for the people of Goa and let the party be decided later,” he said. “I’m a BJP MLA and will speak to the party and if they don’t listen to us then other options are open,” the minister said. Lobo said that the people of Goa will decide who will form the next government in Goa When asked from which party he, his wife Delilah and Sudhir Kandolkar will contest, Lobo said, “I have given names of probable candidates, these are good candidates and people are searching for good candidates. There is no problem even if they are from the opposition.” Asked about the talk in political circles that he wants to have control over Bardez taluka, Lobo said there is nothing like that. “We will go across the state and tell people to elect good people because it is not a question of five months, it is of five years,” he said. “It is not like that,” Lobo said when asked whether it is an indication that he will not continue with BJP. “We want good candidates. People of Goa want good candidates so that their work is addressed and solved, whether it is water or electricity. We are fighting for basic things.” “I will announce the names of more candidates not only in Bardez, but beyond Bardez. We will announce names of candidates who will work for people and I will take the responsibility of that candidate. When I take the name of Kandolkar, and if he does not perform, then it is our responsibility,” he said. Lobo said that he is not eying the chief minister’s post. He said that he will study and announce the name for Aldona constituency. Further, he said that if the sitting MLA is good, then there is no need to announce other names.
PANAJI: After announcing three candidates, including himself, in Bardez taluka without naming party, Goa ports minister Michael Lobo said that he will announce more names for the upcoming assembly elections in the coming days and if BJP does not listen to us, options are open. âWe will announce candidates soon. We are declaring names for the people of Goa and let the party be decided later,â he said. âIâm a BJP MLA and will speak to the party and if they donât listen to us then other options are open,â the minister said. Lobo said that the people of Goa will decide who will form the next government in Goa. When asked from which party he, his wife Delilah and Sudhir Kandolkar will contest, Lobo said, âI have given names of probable candidates, these are good candidates and people are searching for good candidates and there is no problem even if they are from opposition.â Asked about the talk in political circles that he wants to have control over Bardez taluka, Lobo said there is nothing like that. âWe will go across the state and tell people to elect good people because it is not a question of five months, it is for five years,â he said. âIt is not like that,â Lobo said when asked whether it is an indication that he will not continue with BJP. âWe want good candidates. People of Goa want good candidates so that their work is addressed and solved whether it is water or electricity. We are fighting for basic things.â
NT NETWORKPanajiHitting out at the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) for ‘engaging in caste and religion-based politics,’ All India Congress Committee secretary in-charge of Goa desk Dinesh Gundu Rao, on Saturday, said that using caste and religion as “tools” to gain votes will backfire on AAP in the 2022 Goa assembly elections.“Every political party has got their own strategies and own way of working, but to use caste and religion as a way of attracting votes in such a blatant manner I have not seen anywhere, this exposes AAP’s politics and it’s a exhibition of casteism, and using caste and religion as tools to gain votes is completely wrong and it is going to backfire badly,” Rao said while interacting with the media persons after the meeting of the party’s election co-ordination committee in Panaji.He was reacting to the announcement made by senior AAP leader and Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia that the party’s chief ministerial candidate for the 2022 Goa assembly polls will be from Bhandari Samaj and the deputy chief ministerial face will be from the Christian community. Rao said that AAP has a “hollow agenda,” and claimed that their intention is not development and welfare of the people of Goa.South Goa MP Francisco Sardinha said that it was “unfortunate” to see AAP’s move to bring caste and religion in the politics, and added that caste and religion is never a factor in the elections.“My point is if a candidate from a particular caste loses elections then what will they do? Will they import somebody? What caste? After getting elected there is only one caste and religion and that is humanity,” Sardinha said.Earlier in the day, the election co-ordination committee of the Congress party under the chairmanship of former finance minister and AICC senior election observer to Goa P Chidambaram met where they discussed the party’s further election strategies for the assembly polls.Goa Pradesh Congress Committee president Girish Chodankar told the media that the meeting wasto take stock of what was happening and what Congress needed to do and how to move forward by planning future activities of the party organisation.“We will launch statewide agitation in Goa on November 17, 2021 to create awareness on rising inflation.Several other programmes also we have chalked out, we are planning to file a chargesheet against the BJP-led government as for the last ten years people have suffered because of the atrocities committed by the BJP,” he said.Responding to the views expressed by Captain Viriato Fernandes of Goencho Avaaz that Congress and Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party should come together to fight the elections, the GPCC president said, “I think what Viriato Fernandes is expressing a desire of the people of Goa that BJP should be defeated and we have started working to unite the people.”Reacting to the news that former Congressman and former chief minister Luizinho Faleiro will be TMC’s candidate for the upcoming bypoll to a Rajya Sabha seat from West Bengal, Chodankar said, “In the past, we have said that Faleiro was given a retirement package by TMC to quit Congress and today it has turned out to be true.”
Panaji: Congress on Thursday accused Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) of indulging in caste politics in Goa. âIt is clear that when they are not able to raise any issue successfully, they have invoked caste. All are aware AAP has been brought to Goa by BJP to fill the gaps when it is not in position to do anything on its own,â said Goa Pradesh Congress president Chodankar. Earlier in the day, Delhi deputy CM Manish Sisodia said an MLA from the Bahujan Samaj will be chief minister and a deputy will be from the Christian community. tnn
Panaji: Hours after Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Manish Sisodia announced that if the party is voted to power then they will give the post of chief minister and deputy chief minister to persons belonging to Bhandari Samaj and Catholic community respectively, the Congress party on Thursday hit out at AAP for engaging in caste and religion-based politics.“When one is frustrated and realises that nothing is going to work, that is the time you stoop low and do caste and religion-based politics. I and my party never got involved in caste and religion-based politics; we stress on issues pertaining to protection of minority communities and welfare of Bahujan Samaj,” Goa Pradesh Congress Committee president Girish Chodankar said.“The promises made by AAP clearly indicate that they cannot form the next government in Goa. What they want to do in Goa, they should first do it in Delhi. They should tell the people of Goa why they failed to make reservations for local communities in Delhi,” he added.Addressing a press conference in Panaji, along with senior party leader from Delhi Congress Alka Lamba, Chodankar alleged that BJP is using AAP not only to divide the secular vote but also divide the communities. “Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal is originally from Haryana; he should first resign and give the post to a person from Delhi. He should also first give representation to people coming from the largest community in Delhi,” the GPCC president said.Alka Lamba questioned why AAP is shying away from ‘issue based politics’ and alleged that Kejriwal is promoting people belonging to his own caste while ignoring the other communities in Delhi.“Corruption and change in system were AAP’s main poll planks when they fought Delhi elections, but now what has changed suddenly?” she quipped.Lamba accused the BJP-led government at the Centre of conducting an operation to cover up alleged corruption in the Rafale jet deal scam.She questioned why the government failed to investigate the role of a middleman despite recovering documents related to the Rafale deal from him.Meanwhile, the Congress party said that they will launch statewide agitation in Goa on November 17, 2021 to create awareness on rising inflation in the country.
NT NETWORKPanajiWith an eye on the upcoming Goa assembly polls, the Mamata Banerjee-led All India Trinamool Congress has nominated former Goa chief minister and the party’s national vice president Luizinho Faleiro as its candidate for an upcoming bypoll to a Rajya Sabha seat from West Bengal.The Trinamool Congress (TMC) party on Saturday also appointed its Lok Sabha MP Mahua Moitra as in-charge of the party’s Goa unit with immediate effect.After resigning as Congress legislator on September 27, Faleiro had joined TMC on September 29 in Kolkata in the presence of Banerjee. He was subsequently appointed as the national vice president of the party on October 22.A bypoll has been necessitated after TMC MP Arpita Ghosh tendered her resignation from the Upper House of Parliament on September 15. By-election to the Rajya Sabha seat is scheduled to be held on November 29.As the veteran Goan politician is all set to become a member of the Upper House, sources in the TMC said the former chief minister will also be contesting the upcoming Goa assembly elections, scheduled to be held early next year.“We are extremely pleased to nominate Luizinho Faleiro to the Upper House of the Parliament,” AITC announced the decision via a tweet from the party’s official handle, stating that the party is confident that his efforts towards serving the nation shall be appreciated widely byour people.Faleiro is the second Goan politician, who has been nominated to a Rajya Sabha seat from another state. Former chief minister late Manohar Parrikar was elected as a member of the Rajya Sabha from Uttar Pradesh after his induction into the Union cabinet as the Defence minister in 2014.In a press release issued on Saturday, national general secretary of TMC Abhishek Banerjee said Mamata Banerjee is pleased to appoint Mahua Moitra, Lok Sabha MP from Krishnanagar, as in-charge of the party’s Goa unit with immediate effect.“AITC chairperson Mamata Banerjee looks forward to a brighter future for Goa, with All India Trinamool Congress paving the way with courage and wisdom,” he said.Meanwhile, Faleiro thanked Mamata Banerjee and all his party members for nominating him to the Rajya Sabha. “I am grateful for the opportunity to represent Goans at the national level and pledge to make Goans heard,” he said. He also said Goans would now find a voice in the Parliament to raise their issues with the help of TMC.“There are a number of issues including the granting of special category status to Goa on the lines of the Northeast states besides environment, double-tracking of the South West railway track, three linear projects and attempt by the BJP to make Goa a coal destination. I will raise all these issues in the Parliament,” he said.The TMC party has already announced its plan to contest the upcoming Goa legislative assembly elections in 2022 and has been working to build its base in the state. The party chief was in Goa from October 28 to October 30 and interacted with people from various walks of life.
Luizinho Faleiro has been named as Trinamool Congress' candidate for upcoming Rajya Sabha bypoll.Kolkata: The Trinamool Congress on Saturday named its vice president Luizinho Faleiro as its candidate for the upcoming bypoll to a Rajya Sabha seat from West Bengal.Mr Faleiro, the former chief minister of Goa, had quit the Congress and joined the TMC in September."We are extremely pleased to nominate @luizinhofaleiro to the Upper House of the Parliament. We are confident that his efforts towards serving the nation shall be appreciated widely by our people!" the TMC said on Twitter.PromotedListen to the latest songs, only on JioSaavn.comThe Rajya Sabha bypoll is scheduled to be held on November 29.(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
KOLKATA: The All India Trinamool Congress nominated its national vice president and former Goa chief minister Luizinho Faleiro to the Rajya Sabha on Saturday. Faleiro, who quit the Congress party a few months ago, will be the voice of Goans in the Upper House of Parliament, said TMC in a statement. We are extremely pleased to nominate @luizinhofaleiro to the Upper House of the Parliament.We are confident thatâ¦ https://t.co/VJhpteBoBV— All India Trinamool Congress (@AITCofficial) 1636783428000The 70-year-old former Navelim MLA has been the face of the Mamata Banerjee-led party in Goa. However, sources within the party had maintained that TMC, which has decided to contest upcoming Goa elections, would not project Faleiro as the chief ministerial candidate. "I am thankful to all my fellow AITC party members and Mamata Banerjee for nominating me to the Rajya Sabha. I am grateful for the opportunity to represent Goans at the national level and pledge to make Goans heard," said Faleiro. âWe are extremely pleased to nominate Luizinho Faleiro to the Upper House of the Parliament. We are confident that his efforts towards serving the nation shall be appreciated widely by our people,â said TMC in a statement. The Trinamool Congress (TMC) has thrown its hat into the Goa assembly election, slated for early 2022, with its slogan Goenchi Navi Sakal (new dawn for Goa). With near zero presence in the state, the TMC has initiated a high decibel campaign, run mainly by political strategist Prashant Kishor's Indian Political Action Committee (IPAC). TMC has tried to project itself as an alternative to the Congress party and the BJP in Goa. The West Bengal unit has already started its campaign in parts of Salcete with Tennis champion Leander Paes holding corner meetings and interacting with locals. âThe party has done what it had promised by giving a stronger representation to Goa at the national level,â said TMC.
Panaji: West Bengal CM and Trinamool Congress chairperson Mamata Banerjee on Saturday appointed its Lok Sabha MP from Krishnanagar, Mahua Moitra, as its in-charge of the Goa unit, with immediate effect. In a press note issued by the partyâs general secretary Abhishek Banerjee to announce Moitraâs appointment, TMC said that it âlooks forward to a brighter future for Goa with TMC paving the way with courage and wisdomâ. âLooking forward to doing my very best,â Moitra posted on Twitter soon after her appointment was officially announced by the party. TMC has been trying to expand its footprint in Goa, and has already launched its poll campaign. With Moitraâs appointment coming the same day Navelim ex-MLA Luizinho Faleiro was nominated to the Rajya Sabha by TMC, political sources said that the moves indicated the seriousness of the party leadership in contesting the 2022 assembly elections in Goa, despite having zero presence in the state.
KOLKATA: With an eye on the 2022 assembly polls, the Trinamool Congress (TMC) on Saturday appointed MP MP Mahua Moitra in-charge of the party's Goa unit with immediate effect. In a statement, the party said, "Our honourable chairperson Mamata Banerjee is pleased to appoint Mahua Moitra, (MP, Krishnanagar Lok Sabha) as the state in-charge of AITC Goa unit with immediate effect." Earlier in the day, the party nominated former Goa chief minister Luizinho Faleiro for bypoll to a Rajya Sabha seat in West Bengal. Faleiro, who left the Congress to join the Mamata Banerjee camp in September, currently holds the post of TMC vice-president. Banerjee, the TMC supremo, had visited Goa last month and interacted with party workers and leaders there. (With inputs from agencies)
Margao: Former India tennis player Leander Paes, who recently joined Trinamool Congress (TMC) in Goa, embarked upon his political campaign ‘Nave Sakalchi Bhasabhas’ by reaching out to the fishing community of Velim. During his interaction, Paes assured the fisherfolk of protection of their livelihood. “The all-out campaign, which will have Paes at the forefront, will continue to focus on understanding and finding solutions to problems faced by the people of Goa,” a TMC spokesperson told reporters. “It is alarming that in the past decade, fish in Goa’s waters have reduced by 85%,” Paes said. “It is our responsibility to protect each fisherman so that they maintain their livelihood. We will give subsidies for equipment and repairs, as well as focus on waste disposal so that more fishermen don’t suffer.” Stating that six out of 12 talukas of Goa don't have proper drinking water, Paes said, “There has to be good governance for the betterment of people. If given an opportunity we can make a difference to the people.” Paes has his roots in Goa as his great grandparents hailed from Assolna. Acknowledging his Goa connection, Paes said, “This visit to my roots is very special. I wanted to start the first day of my campaign from my roots.” He also paid a symbolic visit to freedom fighter Juliao Menezes’s house at Assolna after which he interacted with locals. TMC has drawn up a 30-day campaign schedule aimed at “strengthening links with people, reigniting the fire of hope for a better Goa.”
Panaji: Reviewing the work it has done in the state in the past over a month, All India Trinamool Congress (TMC) deliberated on the roadmap for the party’s expansion in Goa, membership in remote areas, and social media engagement, at a meeting held on Wednesday. Former Goa chief minister and present TMC national vice-president Luizinho Faleiro held the meeting with party functionaries including Leander Paes, Yatish Naik, Antonio Clovis, Swati Kerkar, Pratibha Borkar and Francis de Tuem. “We will take up hard issues like water, women’s safety, mining and we take them head-on,” Paes said as he addressed party members. Paes said that TMC will start campaigning in Goa from Thursday in order to prove to voters that it is not in Goa to divide the anti-BJP votes, but to provide a political alternative. Sources said that the hype over TMC’s entry into Goa has calmed down as no political bigwigs have joined the party recently. TMC said it has launched a digital campaign in response to chief minister Pramod Sawant’s “audacious demand asking people to thank him for doing his job”. On Saturday, Sawant had complained that the media had not thanked him and the Prime Minister Narendra Modi for slashing fuel prices. In a fitting reply, Goans have decided to congratulate Sawant for destroying Goa, in their own unique way. From law and order, unemployment, corruption, potholes, or complete destruction of the economy, Goans are making sure that Sawant gets his due. As TMC continues to build its presence in Goa, the Bengal-based outfit continues to poach former Congress functionaries. On Wednesday, former Congress general secretary from North Goa district, Socorro Menezes joined TMC . A few days earlier, Carmona sarpanch Allwyn Jorge also joined TMC along with 200 people from his village and Benaulim constituency.