Panaji, Oct 23: The Congress, heading the ruling coalition in Goa, on Sunday said Chief Minister Digambar Kamat will not be projected as its candidate for the top post in the run up to next year's Assembly elections.
Jagmeet Singh Brar, Congress' Goa desk in-charge, told that the party will not project anybody as its chief ministerial candidate during the polls likely in June.
“We will decide about the Chief Minister only after the elections,” Brar maintained.
Kamat, who has been handling the mines portfolio for the last 12 years, has faced severe criticism over the multi-crore illegal mining scam in Goa, which came to light recently.
A report by Public Accounts Committee (PAC) had held him responsible for the mining mess in the state, and the Opposition has sought his resignation. Kamat has, however, denied any wrongdoing.
Brar said newly-elected Congress MLAs will decide who would be their leader.
AICC Secretary Sudhakar Reddy, who along with Brar is in Goa to discuss the issue of pre-poll alliance, said Congress has a tradition of electing Chief Minister only after polls.
“Congress Legislative Party (CLP) and the party high command will decide the person,” he said. Kamat, a former BJP MLA who switched over to Congress after toppling the saffron outfit-led Government in 2005, had emerged as a consensus candidate for the Chief Minister's post after 2007 polls.
Two former Chief Ministers, Pratapsingh Rane and Ravi Naik, were also in the race for the top post in 2007, but the party high command threw its weight behind Kamat.