Wednesday 07 Jun 2023

Magic figure: Cong rebels short of one?


 Speculations were rife during the weekend that the rebel Congress group is now falling short of just one MLA, to form a two-third group and pave the way to quit the party and join the ruling BJP. Sources said a first time MLA, who has time and again vowed to stay put in the Congress, is back on the radar of the rebel group. In 2019, Nuvem Congress MLA Wilfred aka Babashan was the last amongst the 10 MLAs, to give his nod to join the BJP. Wait and watch who amongst the present lot of Congress MLAs will be the last MLA to pave the way to form the eight-member group before they embrace the saffron brigade.  

Digambar’s belief only in destiny 

Senior Congress MLA Diggu is one MLA who does not stop referring to destiny. He recalls how Sonia Gandhi had installed him as the CM in 2007 without any lobbying. In the run up to the 2022 polls, Diggu repeated his belief in destiny almost every day when quizzed whether he is running for the post of Chief Minister.  

Diggu now seemed silent on his removal as a permanent member of the Congress working committee, only saying he had never asked for the position, or, was Sonia’s action also part of his destiny?  

Yuri under scanner of saffron brigade?

For a moment, political observers were trying to figure out whether Congress MLA Yuribab Alemao shares a bond with CM Pramodbab Sawant. For, many an issue raised Yuribab was disposed of by Pramodbab on the floor of the House, only raising eyebrows whether the first time Cuncolim MLA is still under the scanner of the saffron brigade. Yuribab, sources said, has spurned all offers that came his way so far and has gone to the public that he would stay put in the Congress come what may. Wait and watch.  

This time citizens prayed for Cong!

In the run up to the Assembly polls, then GPCC chief Girishbab Chodankar with Opposition leader Diggu and the party candidates in tow hopped from the Mahalaxmi Temple to the Holy Cross, Bambolim and the Masjid to take a pledge not to leave the party. Interestingly, the party did now display the same enthusiasm in going to the temple, cross and masjid and prayed for wisdom and strength for the MLAs to resist all pressures and temptations. Instead, citizens led the prayers, with party leaders playing second fiddle. Any questions?  

PDA plays formalin card to keep tabs on traders

Hazard a guess how the contentious issue of formalin suddenly raised its head again. Well, it has more to do with revenue than health after a PDA official played his due role in the entire episode. With PDA collecting the sopo fees from the fish traders sans a contractor, sources say the PDA official was perturbed that traders procuring fish by trains were selling the fish outside the PDA market, denying revenue to the PDA. What better way to force the traders to get the fish inside the market than to raise the formalin scare and subject the fish to formalin check and also earn a few extra bucks. Interesting, isn’t it?  

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