Goa to vote after subdued campaign

Neither foregone conclusions nor overwhelming odds favour any particular individual or party as Goa goes to polls on April 12.

Compared to the heated campaigning and high-strung gimmicks which have marked India’s election season ahead of the Lok Sabha polls , in Goa, political parties and their candidates were remarkably subdued and less vicious in their pre-poll campaign here.

The key candidates in both the North Goa and South Goa constituencies belong to the BJP and Congress.

BJP’s Shripad Naik, a three-time MP appears to have a wafer thin edge over his rival, Ravi Naik of the Congress, whose alleged linkages to Goa’s drug mafia, have clouded his campaign.

Naik, a former chief minister, had been fielded by the Congress to cut into the numerically powerful Bhandari caste vote-bank, which Shripad Naik is also keen on tapping.

The third candidate in the fray in North Goa is the AAP’s Dattaram Desai, whose campaign has lacked the energy so synonymous with the Arvind Kejriwal-led party.

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