This Article is From Mar 16, 2017

Manohar Parrikar '48-Hour Chief Minister': Digvijaya Singh Ahead of Goa Trust Vote

Digvijaya Singh said the Congress would defeat BJP's Manohar Parrikar in the Goa floor test.

Panaji: It was a night of long knives in Goa's Game of Thrones. As new Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar prepped for a floor test, the Congress has been on the hunt to pull the carpet from under their feet. "If you are seeing me smiling, that shows confidence. We will defeat the motion," said Digvijaya Singh, the Congress' in-charge for the state, to NDTV last night.

As cryptic as the hour calls for, Congress sources say one pro-BJP independent and one "smaller party" legislator are in talks with them, taking their tally for 17 to 19. They say the party now needs just two more legislators to topple BJP's majority.

Under fire from his party's own, who say "mismanagement" and dithering cost the Congress Goa, as well as Manipur, while the BJP managed to stitch together a majority despite winning fewer seats, Mr Singh said, "There is no crisis as far as Goa and Manipur are concerned. The High Command had fully authorised the General Secretaries in charge to take decision and there was no interference."

"There was no delay in picking our leader in the state," he said, rejecting an accusation levelled by the BJP and also kingmaker Vijai Sardesai, a one-time Mr Parrikar-baiter whose party Goa Forward propped up his government with three crucial seats.

"We spoke to Vijai Sardesai on the midnight of 11th and 12th... I even made him talk to Rahul Gandhi in the night," Mr Singh said, adding the Congress Vice President was "closely monitoring" the developments on the night of March 11 - when results were declared.

But whether the Congress has finally managed to swing the stream in its favour will be apparent only this morning when the Assembly convenes at 11:30 am. The BJP said it was confident it will hold on to the support of 22 legislators - one more than the majority mark.