Outgoing Goa Chief Minister Digambar Kamat has said the ruling Congress would have done better in the Assembly polls if he had been projected as the party’s face for the top post.
The picture in Goa, where BJP is set to form the new Government, would have been different if the March 3 elections had been fought completely under his leadership, he told reporters at Margao on Tuesday evening.
“Elections were not completely fought under my leadership,” Mr. Kamat said, responding to a question.
“If party had projected me as the Chief Ministerial candidate, the picture would have been different. People must have been thinking that I was sidelined. This was also one of the factors (for Congress debacle),” he said.
The party had appointed former Chief Minister Pratapsingh Rane as the campaign manager.
Mr. Kamat was by and large restricted to his Assembly segment (Margao) and stepped out of the constituency only twice -- to attend the public meetings addressed by Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
Congress, which had won 16 seats in 2007, was reduced to single digit (9) this time, while BJP-Maharashtawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) alliance swept the polls, securing 24 seats in the 40-member Assembly.
Mr. Kamat conceded that the Congress never expected such a huge debacle. “The party will have to introspect why such results have come,” he said.