Panaji: Leaders of United Goans Democratic
Party Tuesday ruled out their party`s merger with the state`s
ruling Congress after their lone legislator Atanasio Babush
Monserratte joined the Sonia Gandhi-led party.
"It`s for the UGDP presidium to decide on merger. There
was no presidium meeting held recently," Mathany Saldanha,
UGDP`s general secretary, said.
Goa Pradesh Congress Committee president Subhash
Shirodkar, while formally inducting Monserratte into Congress
on Monday, had claimed UGDP had merged with Congress.
"Who has merged UGDP? Shirodkar or Monserratte? UGDP is
not a party of single person. There is a presidium which takes
any crucial decision in the party," Saldanha, a former tourism
minister, shot back.
UGDP had contested 2007 Assembly Election and Monserratte
was its only candidate who was elected to the House.
Senior UGDP leader Radharao Gracias said Congress was
inducting legislators from other parties to strengthen its
position in the state Assembly.
"They had 18 legislators and now their strength has gone
up to 19. There is news that another independent legislator is
going to join them this week taking their strength to 20,"
He said UGDP`s ideology differs from Congress and there
is no question of both the outfits merging.