Local Goa News

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Is Sattari’s Baba going the saffron way?

Congress leaders say Vishwajit has a secret deal with BJP; Madkaikar dubs him as power hungry; Office bearers say Congress should not fall prey to his blackmailing tactics

PANJIM: Is the Sattari prince going the saffron way? That’s what is being speculated over in the past few days. Sattari’s Baba, Vishwajit Rane is on the offensive these days, threatening to leave the Congress if the party does not get into a mahagatbandhan with regional outfits.
“The whole idea of taking up (forming) this alliance is not because anybody has any personal agenda. Look at the results in other states where BJP has won, it is only because of division of opposition votes,” Vishwajit told reporters on Monday.
“If a single leader wants to decide then let him fight the election on his own, I will not be in the Congress party. I will only be in Congress if it stitches up an alliance with like-minded forces,” said Vishwajit, whose father Pratapsingh is the Leader of the Opposition in the Assembly.
Sources within the Congress, however, state this is nothing but an excuse to leave the Congress. “Vishwajit has already made up his mind of contesting polls on the Sattari Yuva Morcha and has been brokering deals with the Bharatiya Janata Party,” sources said. They added, “Whatever he may say he has always had good relations with Manohar Parrikar.”
However, Jr Rane has denied this strongly.
Congress leaders allege that there is an ‘unsigned agreement between the BJP and Ranes’. Leaders also point out that Vishwajit had earlier threatened to quit the party on March 20, if an alliance was formed with Vijai Sardesai.
“This is opportunistic politics,” said Cumbharjua MLA Pandurang Madkaikar, who suggested that junior Rane consult his father first on the issue of alliance. Madkaikar said Vishwajit’s threat is nothing new to the Congress. “He is just trying to create excuses as he seems to have made some other plans. He is power hungry and cannot stay without power,” Madkaikar said.
The Cumbharjua MLA added that Vishwajit cannot dictate terms to the Congress which is a century old party. “Being a Congress leader he can give suggestions and let PCC take a decision,” he said.
Congress vice-president Babi Bagkar questioned why Vishwajit has woken up now just in time for the elections. “Last time around it was Vishwajit, who was one of the major reasons for the party’s dismal performance. His move to bring in Rajesh Patnekar and Dayanand Sopte into the party fold backfired, besides there was the family raj effect,” said an office bearer.
Bagkar said that Congress needs to be firm on its decision and should keep faith in its party workers rather than trusting blackmailers. “Vishwajit needs to understand that the Congress is an age-old party and such tactics of blackmailing would not work here,” he said.
When contacted AICC Secretary Girish Chodankar said, “It’s too early to react on Junior Rane’s statement. We have still one winter season and another six months to go before the elections, his statements keep changing. His last statement in the summer (20th March, 2016) was not only different but exactly opposite of monsoon statement (present statement).”
He said it will be too immature to react at this point of time, and he would wait till December or January when Rane’s last statement comes on the issue to react.

Herald Goa News

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