MGP, GFP say they cannot be taken lightly; Neither attach importance to Amit Shah’s aim of winning 35 seats at next Assembly polls
PANJIM: Following the Karnataka Assembly election results, the significance of regional parties has come to the fore, with BJP’s alliance partners in Goa stating that the importance of State political outfits cannot be undermined in politics.
The statement comes days after BJP National President Amit Shah called on party workers in Goa to ensure the party wins 35 out of 40 Assembly constituencies at the next State elections.
In Goa regional parties Goa Forward Party (GFP) and Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) played a pivotal role in the formation of the BJP-led government, though Congress had the largest number MLAs in the 2017 elections.
“You cannot wish away regional parties. Look at the results in Karnataka and the impact of JDS. You cannot undermine the importance of regional parties in politics,” Goa Forward Party president Vijai Sardesai told media persons.
Sardesai said he looks at Shah’s statement as limited to encouraging the party workers ahead of the Lok Sabha polls. “I am not particularly disturbed or perturbed with the statements made by Shah. You cannot wish away regional parties,” he added.
MGP said that regional parties will remain an important factor in Goan politics. “It is Shah’s dream to win 35 seats. We also have a similar dream to win 18 seats during the next Assembly election. But the dreams have to be fulfilled,” MGP president Deepak Dhavalikar said.
“It is also a fact that regional parties gain a sizeable share of seats in Goa. No national party can take regional parties lightly in Goa. What I have been saying has been proved by the results of last few Assembly elections in Goa,” he said.
Political pundits claim that no national party can form a government without the support of regional parties. “In Goa, BJP was lucky to win 21 seats in 2012. But what happened in 2017? We all know it. Regional parties and Independents are growing strong and they will play a big role in the Lok Sabha elections and so also in the next Assembly election,” a senior political commentator, said.
The BJP currently has 14 seats in the Assembly and has formed the government in alliance with Goa Forward Party , Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party and Independents who have three MLAs each.