Saturday 23 February 2019

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Politics | Assembly 17

MGP wants alliance, but doesn’t trust the BJP

 

Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party wants to continue its alliance with the Bharatiya Janata Party, but doesn’t trust its senior partner in the government.

Learning from the past experience, it has identified 25 constituencies in case the alliance breaks last minute for the forthcoming Assembly election 2017.

After aligning with the Congress for the full term of Digambar Kamat post-2007, MGP joined hands with the BJP to fight historic 2012 election, which pushed down the Congress to mere 9 seats in the 40-memebr House.

The MGP, in spite of having only three members in the House, has two ministerial berths – both to the Dhawalikar brothers – Sudin and Dipak.

“There is no question of having alliance with the Congress”, says Lavoo Mamledar, the MGP general secretary, who is also the third MLA from Ponda.

But the party, which ruled the state for initial 17 years since 1963, also does not fully trust its like-minded saffron partner – the BJP.

“We have learnt from the history and does not want to be caught unaware any more”, says Mamledar bluntly.

He recalls the situation in 1999, when the alliance talks failed couple of days before the last day of filing nominations.

Shocked with the last-minute ditching, MGP’s desperate leaders were literally searching for the candidates.

The BJP had made a debut in Goa Assembly in 1994 by aligning with its ‘senior brother’ MGP, which won 11 seats out of 25 while the BJP won only 4 out of 12 allotted to them.

 

With Ram Janmbhoomi issue that brought BJP to the fore nationwide and the dynamic role played by Manohar Parrikar and Shripad Naik in the Goa Assembly, the ‘junior’ BJP suddenly started playing dominant role in the alliance talks.

As a result of snapping ties with its one-time ‘senior brother’, the BJP won 10 seats while the MGP was marginalised to mere 4, not even as a major party in the House, in 1999 election.

Since then, MGP is on a complete decline while the BJP has risen to power, winning 21 seats in the last election. The MGP could win only 3 seats.

“We don’t want 1999 to happen again. If it happens, we are all prepared to go alone with our own strength”, says Mamledar.

But if not BJP, the Maharashtrawadis are not prepared to have truck either with the Congress or the talks of third force going on right now.

“We are the third option. Why should we go and join somebody? In fact they should come and join us”, Mamledar argues.  





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Who is Mamledar? MGP is owned by Dhavlikars who are shrewd and cunning politicians. They know how to stay on the side of power and rake in millions. They are testing waters before elections.

 
JLP , Goa

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