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'Single largest party' Congress trumped in Goa, Manipur; Chidambaram says BJP 'stealing' elections

Congress leaders on Monday cried foul after the party lost the numbers game to BJP in Goa and Manipur, saying the saffron party was stealing elections in states.
India TV Politics Desk New Delhi March 13, 2017 13:22 IST
India TV Politics Desk

Congress leaders on Monday cried foul after the party lost the numbers game to Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) in Goa and Manipur, saying the saffron outfit was "stealing" elections in states as a party which comes second has "no right" to form the government.  

"A party that comes second has no right to form government. BJP stealing elections in Goa and Manipur (sic)," senior Congress leader and Rajya Sabha MP P Chidambaram said in a tweet. 

The comment of the former Finance and Home Minister came after the BJP staked claim to form the government in Goa and Manipur -- where it failed to emerge as the single largest party -- with the support of smaller parties and some Independents. 

Another Congress leader Digvijaya Singh, who was party's incharge in Goa, said it was the victory of money power over people's power. 

BJP, which was behind the single largest party Congress in Manipur and Goa, is all set to form government in both the states. 

While Manohar Parrikar has already been appointed Chief Minister in Goa, the party is yet to take a call on chief ministerial nominee in Manipur.

In both these states, the Congress has emerged as the single largest party in the assembly elections results of which were declared on March 11. 

The Congress had won 28 seats in Manipur and 17 in Goa, followed by the BJP 21 and 13 seats, respectively. While Manipur has an Assembly of 60 members, Goa has a 40-member house.

In Manipur, the BJP has met the Governor and claimed that it enjoyed the support from three small NDA constituents, a Congress MLA and the lone Trinamool Congress legislator, taking its tally to 32 in the 60-member assembly. 

Targeting the BJP, Digvijaya Singh said money power has won over people's power. 

"Money Power has won over People's Power. I apologise to the People of Goa as we couldn't muster the support to form the Government (sic)," he tweeted. 

He said the Congress would continue to fight against communal forces of "money power politics" in Goa. 

In Goa, the BJP gathered support from three members each of the Goa Forward Party (GFP), the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) and two Independents, taking the tally of the coalition to 21 in the 40-member assembly. The lone NCP MLA was also claimed to have extended support. 

In Manipur, the BJP bagged support from three NDA constituents -- the National People's Party (NPP), the Lok Janshakti Party (LJP) and the Naga People's Front (NPF). 

Besides, one Congress MLA and the lone Trinamool Congress legislator extended support to the BJP in evening.

Congress' chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala said on Sunday  that Modi government was "subverting the law and democracy." 

"As per the Constitution and norms, the single largest party is always invited to form the government. The Modi government through the Governors, who are acting as its stooges, is subverting the law and democracy," Surjewala said. 

"Federalism and the rule of law being murdered in broad daylight by the Modi Government," he alleged. 

Former Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, however, took a dig at the Congress. 

"In 2002 NC was single largest but Governor called Cong & PDP because he was satisfied they had the numbers to form Govt (sic)," the National Conference (NC) leader said, referring to the Congress-PDP government in Jammu and Kashmir led by PDP chief Mufti Mohammad Sayeed.

(With PTI inputs)