Eyeing the 2022 Goa elections, the NCP on Friday, said that it was open to a coalition with Congress if a "respectable seat-sharing" was finalised. Addressing a press meet, NCP's Goa observer Narendra Verma said that NCP had allied with Congress since its inception and wished to ally with other parties so that the 'secular votes' do not get split. Currently, BJP is in power with 27 of 40 seats while Congress has just 5 seats.
"Today in Maharashtra, we are in an alliance. Since NCP's inception, we have been in alliance with Congress. When there is a respectful seat-sharing with Congress, we will ally. We don't want the secular vote to get divided, benefitting someone else," said Verma.
Earlier on October 27, NCP's Goa chief Praful Patel said that the party will offer a non-Congress non-BJP option for the people of Goa and will look to get together with like-minded parties ahead of the 2022 assembly elections in the state. Ruling out an alliance with AAP, Patel said a post-poll anti-BJP alliance could be on the cards. NCP has just one MLA - Churchill Alemao in the Goa Legislative Assembly which is scheduled to go to the polls in early 2022.
“I am sure the NCP along with like-minded parties without Congress or BJP will be in a position to build trust of the people of Goa. NCP will work in every constituency in Goa and try to build the party in a formidable way. Certainly not with BJP or Congress as I said, last time, they (Congress) did not want to have an alliance with us. Now also they are making announcements that they will fight on their own. We will definitely not go with AAP,” Patel said.
In 2019, 10 of 15 Congress MLAs merged with the ruling BJP, increasing the saffron party's strength to 27 in the 40-seat house. The Congress, which had emerged as the single-largest party after 2017 Assembly polls in the coastal state, was reduced to five legislators. A group of ten Congress MLAs in Goa led by Leader of Opposition in the Assembly Chandrakant Kavlekar and nine other Congress MLAs, Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant announced that two thirds of the Congress Legislative Party — enough to avoid action under the anti-defection law — has merged with the BJP. The party had cried foul that it had not been invited to form the government in Goa after the February 2017 Assembly polls despite it emerging as the single largest party.