Panaji: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Sunday announced a pre-poll alliance in Goa with the regional Maharshtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP).
BJP president Nitin Gadkari, who was in Goa to finalise the alliance, told reporters at a joint press conference that it was a natural alignment of anti-Congress forces.
"As per the final arrangement the BJP will contest 31 seats and the MGP 8 and both the parties will support an independent candidate in Cumbharjua constituency," Gadkari said, sealing a two-month-long process of heated wrangling between the two parties over seat sharing.
MGP was a partner in the Congress-led government in Goa and withdrew its support Sunday, minutes before announcing its alliance with the BJP.
"We have withdrawn support to the Congress government today because we are tired of the corruption in this government," said Dipak Dhavalikar, president of the MGP, after being a partner in the alliance for over four years.
Gadkari said that a poll manifesto would be issued by the party soon. "The Congress government has been the most corrupt yet in Goa and the BJP-MGP alliance promises a good, clean and efficient government. This is a natural alliance," Gadkari said.
The MGP, which once ruled Goa for over 15 years after the state`s liberation in 1961, is a fading force with just two legislators in the 40-member assembly.
As per the seat sharing arrangement, the MGP has been allotted the Ponda, Marcaim, Benaulim, Thivim, Dabolim, Quepem, Priol and Nuvem assembly seats, whereas the BJP would contest 31. Both parties have also resolved to support an independent candidate Nirmala Sawant in the Cumbharjua assembly seat in north Goa.