Veteran Congressman and Navelim MLA Luizinho Faleiro submitted his resignation, both as a legislator and a member of the party on Monday bringing down curtains to his illustrious association with the grand old party. Faleiro's hesitancy indirectly announcing his link with the Trinamool Congress is understandable given the backlash it would invite from people, but what is baffling is the round-about and absurd reasoning put forth to exit the party.
The veteran leader explained that he moved out with a mission to create a larger unity between the various factions of the Congress -- "the Mamata Congress, the YSR Congress, Pawar Congress and the Sonia Congress". He raised a pitch on Goa and Goans getting a raw deal and how the BJP-led government is letting down the people on various issues.
What he doesn't explain is his role in being a unifying force between the various groups of Congress and the Goa connection to his larger scheme of things. What he also doesn't explain is how his exit from Congress will help dethrone the BJP which he sees as the common enemy. On the contrary, if Faleiro considers TMC ideologically close to Congress, he would be plotting a further downfall of Congress by eating into their vote share and indirectly helping the BJP. It is intriguing how this "supreme sacrifice" as Luizinho sees it, will help the larger cause.
As a legislator and a senior party member he is well within his right to quit, there's no denying that. But at least the legislator has to be upfront and show bravado in clearly putting across what triggered the decision. By engaging other members of the party to speak of his anger, the talk of unifying Congress and doing justice to the people of Goa appears to be just a smokescreen.
It is an open secret that there was a constant struggle within Congress over leadership and power. Faleiro has found himself at the dead end after the Congress high command settled on the Girish Chodankar-Digambar Kamat duo to lead the party into the 2022 elections. We understand Faleiro’s only shot at the throne is by joining hands with another party and mustering the numbers.
Politicians consistently talk about failures of government and injustices meted out to people, but what about the failure of the Opposition? The senior leader should first accept the responsibility on this count. Belting out issues like formalin, coal and linear projects is a devious attempt to play to the galleries and get public sympathy, nothing beyond that. Where was Faleiro when citizens were marching the streets and burning the midnight oil? There was a complete failure of the Opposition, and campaigns were driven by people and civil society.
Mamata Banerjee's firepower to take on the BJP and women empowerment are credible planks for TMC, but again, it remains to be seen if there are takers for these in Goa. It's unfortunate that a senior leader like Faleiro, who was ineffective in the opposition, chose the fag end of this legislative term to highlight failures of the government and use that as an alibi to attempt fulfilling a personal political ambition.