Former two-time Goan CM Luizinho Faleiro joins TMC, says Goa needs ‘credible alternative’

The two-time CM of Goa, Luizinho Faleiro has joined TMC today with six other Congressmen, cementing Trinamool’s induction to the Goan election battle due in 2022

Kolkata: Luizinho Faleiro, the former two-time chief minister and seven-time MLA from Navelim Constituency in Goa has joined the All India Trinamool Congress (TMC) along with six other Congressmen today. He joined the green camp in the presence of TMC’s National General Secretary, Abhishek Banerjee and senior leaders — Sougata Roy and Subrata Mukherjee.

Before joining the party formally, he met the party chief Mamata Banerjee along with his loyalists who reached Kolkata yesterday. The former Goa Congress general secretaries Yatish Naik and Vijay Vasudev Poi and former state secretaries of the party, Mario Pinto De Santana and Anand Naik also joined the Trinamool Congress.

Sahitya Akademi award winner and poet Shivdas Sonu Naik and deputy secretary of Goan Police Services, Lavoo Mamledar joined the newly formed Goan unit of TMC too. TMC is expected to contest the 2024 General election as a national party.

Luizinho Faleiro calls for unity of Congress

The former General Secretary of the All India Congress Committee of Indian National Congress since 2013, Luizinho Faleiro has called for unity in Congress. “Congress is broken. We now have Mamata Banerjee’s TMC, YSR Congress, and Sharad Pawar’s NCP. All of us have to come together to oust BJP from power,” he said at the press conference.

The Goa elections are due in the next three or three-half months. These inductions cemented TMC plans of testing the Goan election currents. According to Congress veteran Luizinho Faleiro, he has joined TMC to bring a fiery opposition face in Goa. “Goa needs a fiery opposition leader who will voice the problems of local people. They need a credible alternative. Mamata Banerjee is a street fighter who has fought BJP like no other,” Faleiro said.

Luizinho Faleiro wants to unite Congress before the 2024 General Elections. Although, the union is deemed to be a distant dream by the experts. Congress hopes are still high. But with state polls knocking the doors and AAP, TMC, and Congress contesting the elections separately, the talk about uniting under one banner is creating confusion among the common men.

Former two-time Goan CM Luizinho Faleiro joins TMC, says Goa needs 'credible alternative'
Luizinho Faleiro with the senior TMC leaders

Faleiro also spoke about the incompetency of Congress in the 2017 Goa polls. According to him, the party high-command lacklustre stopped Congress from forming the government even after having the mandate. The denial led few Congress leaders to jump the ship. “We did not form government despite having the mandate,” he said today after joining TMC. Congress was voted as the single largest party in the 2017 elections.

He was also Congress’s election man. Faleiro was in charge of seven sister states of northeast India. “I had made Congress win Meghalaya, Mizoram, and Manipur,” he added.

The road ahead

Goa will witness a four-party fight between TMC, AAP, Congress, and BJP to date. “Trinamool will fight alone in the upcoming polls,” Abhishek Banerjee said. The party will start their campaign with Mamata and Abhishek Banerjee visiting the smallest state of the country after the Durga Puja Festivities. “TMC will expedite the setting up of the party organisation in Goa and will make sure that the people of Goa witness a ‘New Dawn’,” he added. Goa currently has over 65% of the young population.

With issues like unemployment clubbed with the closure of mining soaring as the main agenda of the poll campaigning, it will be worth the wait to see what TMC has to offer. Just to note, AAP has promised to pay a monthly stipend to the families, till one of them gets a job.

In the recent C-voter survey, BJP is projected to win the majority followed by AAP with a 22.8% vote share. Interestingly, 13.8% of respondents replied “anyone from AAP” as their CM choice —more than three Congress candidates put together — Ravi Naik (4.5%), Digambar Kamat (4.5%), and Luizinho Faleiro (3.7%), according to Financial Express.

This equation will change with TMC joining the fray. The survey projected around 23% of vote shares for others. Falerio changing to green and joining ‘joraful’ camp is expected to uplift his image. “More Goan leaders will join TMC in the upcoming days,” Sougata Roy said today.

“Congress is sitting idle in Delhi. They need to hit the streets like TMC and reach out to the people. TMC is not going to be cowed down. We will take the BJP head-on and oust them,” Abhishek said. Earlier, TMC’s agenda of street politics has shifted the swinging votes and dissent voters in their favour in a short span of time. “The only leader who has faced BJP and won against its divisive agenda is ‘Didi’. She is a streetfighter, a fighter par excellence, and we need such fighters to save the country from BJP,” Luizinho said.

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