Congress, NCP continue to squabble over Goa seats

March 4th, 2009 - 12:39 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata PartyPanaji, March 4 (IANS) Goa’s ruling coalition partners the Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) continue their squabble over seat sharing in the coming Lok Sabha polls. Voting in the two Goa seats is scheduled April 23.
The state’s main opposition Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has already declared its two nominees. Former central minister Shripad Naik has been chosen for the North Goa seat and Narendra Savoikar for the South Goa seat.

On the other hand, while the Congress has staked its claim to both seats, the NCP has been insisting on contesting the North Goa seat.

“We will announce our candidates in the second week of March,” Goa Pradesh Congress Committee president Subhash Shirodkar said here Tuesday, while refraining from comment on questions relating to a seat sharing formula with the NCP.

NCP president Wilfred de Souza, while claiming that the party was open to contesting both seats as of now, said here Monday that the final decision would be taken by the NCP high command.

“We will follow guidelines laid down by them. If they say there is a seat sharing agreement, we will have one,” de Souza said.

Other regional parties, which have announced they will join the fray include the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) and the United Goans Democratic Party (UGDP), both of which are a part of the Congress led coalition government in the state.

Goa has just over a million voters who are qualified to exercise their franchise next month.

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