Sonia hits back at BJP over scams in Karnataka

Addressing a large public meeting at Fatorda, South Goa on Saturday, Congress president Sonia Gandhi reflected briefly on issues of good governance, political stability and corruption to respond to the BJP attack.

Her Goa campaign planned by Congress strategists to counter the undercurrent of anti-incumbency in some of the Congress’ strongest seats in South Goa, may have little effect at this phase in the election. Apart from Chief Minister Digambar Kamat in Margao, Power Minister Alex Sequeira in Nuvem and a handful of others, some big gun Congress personalities are having to put up a strong fight to save their seats.

Given the growing disenchantment with the Congress in Goa over corruption, the Congress chief said establishing the state Lokayukta would be a priority. But she also attacked the BJP on this and its campaign against black money abroad, calling the saffron party hypocritical. “The BJP should look within at its own scam-stained government next door in Karnataka,” she said, adding that the Congress was going about methodically to bring back money stashed in foreign accounts.

The Congress-NCP combine is contesting all 40 seats, the BJP-MGP are in the race for 35. The Congress had won 16 seats in 2007, the NCP 3, the BJP 14 and MGP 2. The Congress had a comfortable majority with two independents and the merger of a regional party that helped it run a stable government after a decade of instability.

Swedish couple attend rally

Despite the crush of party supporters at Sonia Gandhi’s South Goa rally, Swedes Hans Torner and Antonia Schiller stood out glaringly. Why had they braved the heat?
“For Sonia Gandhi,” said Torner. “We read so much about her, we wanted to see and hear what she is like.”

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