This is a story of how the Congress lost a winning state due to sheer arrogance and apathy. Well before the results were out, Vijay Sardesai of the Goa Forward Party was in Delhi seeking an appointment with Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi. He was given time to meet Rahul at the party’s “war room” at Gurudwara Rakabganj Road. Sardesai reached the venue only to find that the Cong VP was running late. He then walked across to NCP leader Praful Patel’s residence down the road and waited for almost four hours, but Rahul Gandhi did not bother to turn up. Praful Patel even dialled Congress general secretary Digvijaya Singh to inform him of Sardesai’s offer to support the Congress, but there was no response. And today, it is because the Congress did not have Sardesai’s support (amongst others) it could not cobble up the numbers to form government in Goa. Contrast this with the speed with which the BJP moved: minutes after the results, BJP president Amit Shah called up Nitin Gadkari and despatched him to Goa. Gadkari worked overnight and by next morning had sewn a winning coalition in place. No wonder the BJP is making fun of Congress’ high command culture..


Isolated by the smaller parties in Goa, who have shown a preference for the BJP over the Congress as an alliance partner, Congress general secretary Digvijaya Singh has been commenting on the instability of the BJP-led government in Goa. But after one of Congress’ own MLAs abstained in the trust vote, Nitin Gadkari got a chance to hit back. Talking to NewsX he commented, “I am worried about the stability of the Opposition, with its own MLAs deserting the Congress.”


The opening night of Charu Singh’s multi-designer store at Delhi’s upmarket Meher Chand Market was a star studded event. RLD leader Ajit Singh’s daughter-in-law (Jayant Chaudhry’s wife) had for long been planning her own boutique venture and though the opening coincided with the day of the exit polls, the evening was well attended by Piyush Goyal, R.P.N. Singh, Supriya Sule, Deepender Hooda, Madhu Yaskhi, Neeraj Shekhar, Kalikesh Singh Deo, Praful Patel and Rajiv Shukla. The talk of the evening was politics in the cow-belt and while most present agreed that the exit polls had got it right, none guessed the extent of the BJP win. None but Piyush Goyal. For according to BJP MP Bhartendra Singh, he was told by Piyush Goyal even before the last phase went to the polls that the BJP would sweep UP. According to Singh, Goyal had read the pulse even before the ballot was sealed. Now that’s called keeping your ear to the ground, Mr Goyal..

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