Goa ex-minister blames mining scam for loss

March 14th, 2012 - 9:23 pm ICT by IANS  

Panaji, March 14 (IANS) A powerful ex-minister in the previous Congress government in Goa Wednesday blamed ex-Chief Minister Digambar Kamat’s inability to control illegal mining as the reason behind the party’s rout in the March 3 polls.

“It is wrong to say that ‘Family Raj’ is responsible for the loss of the Congress. Digambar Kamat’s inability to control illegal mining is responsible for our loss,” Churchill Alemano said in Margo, 35 km away.

“He allowed all the mountains and fields to be converted into mining areas and the people got angry,” the former Public Works Department minister told reporters.

Alemao’s statement came two days after Goa Congress president Subhash Shirodkar blamed “Family Raj” for the defeat, referring to the allotment of 12 out of 40 tickets to the kin of legislators from the Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP).

Four members from the Alemao family, including his brother Joaquim, his daughter Valanka and his nephew Yurim, were controversially awarded ticket by the Congress-NCP combine. All four lost the elections, as did the father-son duo of former home minister Ravi Naik and Ritesh, who had been given Congress ticket.

The BJP won an unprecedented majority in the 40-member house while its ally Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party secured three seats. The Congress won only nine out of 40 seats.

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