PONDA/PANJIM: Ramkrishna (Sudin) Dhavalikar is positioning himself as the suitable boy for all political parties. The MGP spearhead is clear that his first aim is to be backed as Chief Minister by the Congress “should MGP get more than four seats”. It is still improbable that the Congress would agree to back a MGP-led government.
Dhavalikar, called on Congress working president Aleixo Sequeira, on Thursday since Sequeira’s breakfast at Dhavalikar’s Mahalakshmi abode couldn’t materialise. After the meeting, in a chat with Herald, Dhavalikar said, “The Congress has to decide if it wants to sit in the opposition or be a part of the ruling combination. If MGP gets less than four seats, then in all humility we can back the Congress along with TMC and perhaps even AAP, but MGP expects more than five seats and these will be needed by anyone to form a government. The TMC-MGP alliance wants to be with the Congress since we have fought against the BJP.”
Sequeira also confirmed that Dhavalikar met him since “he’s a good friend”. He also said that Dhavalikar had indeed stated that he wants to be Chief Minister seeking Congress’ support. “I told him that I’m not the decision-making authority. The high command shall be informed and it’s for them to decide if and how to take this forward. The Congress is looking to getting a majority on its own.”
It is improbable that the Congress will react to such proposals at this stage, but seeing the nature of this election and the needs of all parties, no one has the luxury of burying any suggestion or proposal outright.
The MGP has stated that it will take decisions along with TMC, but Dhavalikar is calling on and receiving political guests on his own. Prior to meeting Sequeira, he met former Maharashtra chief minister Devendra Fadnavis of the BJP leading to speculation about him keeping his plan B ready with the BJP. Dhavalikar dismissed the meeting as “just a courtesy meeting” where potential formations were discussed. When pressed for details of the deliberations he quipped, “We fought against the BJP. For now, the TMC-MGP will be discussing whether Congress and AAP could come into the picture. We will look at that first.”
With a week left for the counting of votes, political activity in Goa is reaching its peak with the high commands and top political strategists of all parties expected to land in Goa in the next 48 hours and camp here till government formation. With margins expected to be minimal in many seats, everyone is in play and the line between victory and defeat will be very narrow.