The oldest political party in Goa, the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party that has suffered the ignominy of being relegated to a has been from a party that ruled Goa for quite a period of time, is now suddenly at centre stage as political parties in Goa are gearing for the assembly elections.
The MGP that has lost a substantial number of its members to the Bharatiya Janata Party and its leaders to the Congress, is now being wooed by the two main national parties dominating Goan politics in recent times.
The BJP has sent overtures to the MGP for a pre-poll alliance as was done in the past. In fact, in 1999 there was much speculation of the BJP-MGP pact that would have probably ended the Congress rule in Goa. However, that did not happen as the two parties could not agree to the number of seat allotment.
Since Goa has been ruled by alliance governments since then, there are moves now to forge pre-poll alliances like the one existing between the Congress and Nationalist Congress Party that currently is going through a rough weather.
MGP General Secretary Lovu Mamletdar said they would await a formal proposal from the BJP before responding to the overture. Party officials also pointed out that they are open to an alliance with the Congress if a proposal comes from that party too.
The MGP which has two MLAs in the Goa Legislative Assembly has an alliance with the Congress and one of its MLA Sudin Dhawalikar is a minister. However, both the MGP MLAs have the Damocles’ sword hanging over them in the form of a disqualification petition filed before the Speaker which is yet to be disposed off.
The MGP by indicating that it is open for an alliance with the BJP is probably trying to force Speaker Pratapsing Rane to dispose the petition.
The MGP has declared its intention of contesting from at least 10 assembly constituencies at the forthcoming elections.
Felicitation: About eighty Marathi stage artists, who have performed on Marathi plays but never been recognised for their contribution, will be felicitated as a part of Bhausaheb Bandokar Birth Centenary Celebration Committee, Mamletdar said.