Highlights

  • Congress makes its candidates take a pledge of loyalty
  • Congress is left with only 2 MLAs in Goa Assembly
  • In 2017, it had won 17 seats in the 40-member assembly

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Goa Elections 2022 | Hit by defections, Congress makes candidates pledge loyalty before God

The grand old party, which had emerged as the single largest force by winning 17 seats in the 40-member House after the 2017 Assembly elections, now has only two MLAs in the House.

Ahead of the next month's Goa Assembly elections, the Congress, which was hit hardest by defections in the BJP-ruled state in the last five years, made its candidates swear before God that they will not switch the party if they get elected.

The Congress on Saturday took all its 34 candidates in a special bus to a temple, a church as well as a dargah in the state and made them take the 'anti-defection' pledge.

The candidates were taken to the Mahalaxmi temple in Panaji, a church at Bambolim and at a dargah in Betim village near the capital city.

Senior Congress leader P Chidambaram, who is party’s Goa election observer, accompanied the candidates to these religious places.

Since the last election, the Congress has seen most of its legislators quitting the party. The grand old party, which had emerged as the single largest force by winning 17 seats in the 40-member House after the 2017 Assembly elections, now has only two MLAs in the House.

Also watch: Goa Election 2022: Party (hopping) never stops in Goa, 70% MLAs have changed sides

In 2019, ten Congress legislators had joined the ruling BJP, whose current strength in the Assembly stands at 27.

But the Congress is not the first party in the state to undertake this kind of exercise.

On January 31 last year, the Goa Forward Party (GFP) had taken its all three MLAs and office-bearers to Dev Bodgeshwar temple at Mapusa and made them take a pledge that they will not support the BJP in the 2022 state elections.

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