Mamata declares ‘match’ against BJP in Goa

Taking a cue from the ‘Khela Hobe’ slogan used in West Bengal elections, Mamata said it will be ‘Khel Jatlo’ in Goa.

Published: 14th December 2021 08:22 AM  |   Last Updated: 14th December 2021 08:22 AM   |  A+A-

West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee in Goa on Monday | PTI

Express News Service

PANAJI:  Until recently, Trinamool Congress had no presence in Goa. Now, it is difficult to miss Mamata Banerjee smiling from the hoardings in the coastal state. In the state run by BJP headed for Assembly polls next year, TMC is promising Goenchi Navi Sakal (Goa’s New Dawn).

Mamata started a two-day trip of the state on Monday. Meetings with editors of media organisations, addressing public gatherings and reaching out to community leaders to induct fresh faces into the party are some of the points on her agenda. This is Mamata’s second Goa visit in two months.

Taking a cue from the ‘Khela Hobe’ slogan used in West Bengal elections, Mamata said it will be ‘Khel Jatlo’ in Goa. “BJP ke khilaf khela hobe, khel jatlo, BJP hatao (there will be a match against BJP, oust BJP). If anyone wants to defeat BJP, then it’s up to them to support us. All these years we did not come to Goa, but we realised no one was fighting against BJP,” the TMC supremo said.

BJP has posters with the faces of PM Modi, former Goa CM Manohar Parrikar, Goa CM Pramod Sawant and some prominent leaders. The state is witnessing a mutli-corner protest with Congress, AAP and smaller parties also in the fray.

Congress has had a lot of leaders jumping ship to TMC. There were hardly any posters on display on December 10, when Priyanka Gandhi Vadra was in the city. Despite all preparations, will TMC be able to open its account in the Assembly that has 40 seats? Many believe the party doesn’t  have a ground presence.

They also feel that publicity may not produce results because when it comes to voting, people prefer a party that can come to power. TMC in Goa is an unknown entity after all. “Mamata didi is everywhere in the city on posters, but there are no TMC units at the village and smaller levels. Moreover, many consider it to be an outsider party. We want to vote for our leaders,” said Prateek Satardekar, a shop owner here.

People also think that following a rise in the migrant population in Goa, parties are supporting them to boost their vote bank. “People from other states are changing our culture. This is a big issue for us who originally hail from the state,” said a taxi driver from Vasco.

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