Congress walks on political ‘minefield’ in Goa

Facing allegations of shielding illegal mining in Goa, Congress began exercise of soliciting views of its legislators on possible leadership change.

Panaji: Facing allegations of shielding
illegal mining activity in Goa, the ruling Congress today
began an exercise of soliciting views of its legislators on
possible leadership change in the state.

Congress Goa desk in-charge Jagmeet Brar arrived here
today and checked into a five-star hotel in South Goa where he
held one-to-one meetings with the legislators.

Sources said the party is mulling whether to allow
Chief Minister Digambar Kamat to continue or have a leadership
change in the backdrop of allegations of illegal mining in the
state, where Assembly polls are due next year.
Kamat and several other Congress MLAs met Brar and
held discussions with him at the hotel, where the media
persons were not allowed. The meetings continued till the
evening, but no details were available.

The tiny state has been witnessing hectic political
activities after the mining scam came to light a few days ago.

Main Opposition BJP has stepped up pressure on the
Congress-led coalition Government and has demanded the
resignation of Kamat, who was once in the saffron outfit.
Political ripples of the scam were also felt in
today`s Cabinet meeting, which ended abruptly after clearing
appointments to over 1,000 posts in various Government
departments, the sources said.

PWD Minister Churchill Alemao said the Cabinet will
meet again on Monday to discuss the remaining agenda.

Speculation was rife in political circles that
Congress may seek dissolution of the Assembly and seek early
polls. But Education Minister Atanasio Monserratte said there
was no discussion on the dissolution of the House.

The quantum of illegal mining from Goa is estimated to
be between Rs 1,200 crore and Rs 10,000 crore.


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