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RS: Cong fields Shantaram against BJP’s Tendulkar

The poll for Rajya Sabha seat in Goa has officially transformed into the clash of titans with Congress finalising the name of Shantaram Naik as the party candidate to go up against BJP president and candidate Vinay Tendulkar.

11th July 2017, 10:29 Hrs
Sonia, Rahul give green signal for Naikrrthe goan I networkrPANAJI rrAll India Congress Committee secretary in-charge of Goa desk Dr A Chellakumar announced that AICC president Sonia Gandhi and Vice President Rahul Gandhi late on Monday night communicated their approval for the candidature of the party’s sitting RS MP Shantaram. rSpeaking to The Goan earlier in the evening on Monday, Leader of Opposition Chandrakant ‘Babu’ Kavalekar stated, “All 16 members of Congress Legislative Party (CLP) have deliberated on the list of candidates including Ramakant Khalap, Ramakant Angle, Jitendra Deshprabhu and Shantaram Naik. We leave the final decision to high command. CLP will meet on Tuesday and the candidate will file nomination by 12 pm.” rSources present at the meeting convened by Kavalekar at Margao, however, disclosed that the CLP has unanimously given its nod to Shantaram, the sitting Congress RS MP, to attempt to snatch a hatrick. rAICC secretary Chellakumar, who landed in Goa late on Monday night, met several Congressmen including Kavalekar to learn their views and communicated the CLP’s decision to the AICC.rrShantaram: Could not say norto High CommandrrMARGAO: Rajya Sabha MP and Goa Pradesh Congress Committee (GPCC) president Shantaram Naik late Monday night said that he will have 10 days between the date of filing of nomination papers on Tuesday to the election for the lone Rajya Seat to achieve the magic figure and retain the seat. r“Why not”, was how Shantaram reacted when asked whether he would be in a position to achieve the magic number and retain the seat when the ruling coalition government is going all out for a win. r“I will have around 10 days to garner support for my candidature and retain the seat”, Shantaram told The Goan. rThough the GPCC president had maintained earlier in the evening that he was not the front runner as the Congress party candidate for the seat, he later admitted that he could not say no to the decision of the party High Command. rThat he was the Congress party candidate for the lone Rajya Sabha seat was communicated to him by Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader Babu Kavlekar late Monday night after the arrival of AICC General secretary in-charge of Goa desk, Dr Chella Kumar.