BJP sweeps Goa ZP polls, Congress, AAP routed

Updated December 14, 2020

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Panaji, Dec 14 (IANS) The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Monday swept polls to two zilla panchayat bodies in the state, in an election which Chief Minister Pramod Sawant claimed was a "test" for his government.

While the final results are not out yet, the BJP has already won 17 out of the 25 seats of the North Goa Zilla Panchayat, while the party has won 14 seats out of the 23 seats of the South Goa Zilla Panchayat body. The Congress, so far, has won one seat in North Goa, while in South Goa the party managed to win only three seats.

The Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party won three seats across both the ZP bodies, while the Aam Aadmi Party and Nationalist Congress Party won one seat each. Seven Independent candidates have also recorded victories in the ZP polls, voting for which was held on December 12.

"People had come out for voting despite the Covid-19 pandemic. People have shown faith in us. This was a test of our government," Sawant said. Sawant took charge as Chief Minister in March 2019, a year before the pandemic was declared in the country.

The polls to the ZP bodies are the first major elections in the state since. The elections were originally scheduled to be held on March 22, but were postponed indefinitely after the central government imposed a lockdown throughout the country.

State BJP president Sadanand Shet Tanavade said that the results have proved that the people of Goa did not buy into the discontent calliberated on social media by the ruling party's opponents, who have slammed the Sawant-led government over various development projects in the state's hinterland.

"There were agitations which were played up on social media regarding the Tamnar (power) project, (railway) double tracking, coal (transportation), etc. All NGOs, political parties which started these agitations and tried to defame the government on social media. This result is a slap in their faces and a certificate for the good work done by the BJP," Tanavade said.

Around 4.50 lakh voters cast ballot in the zilla panchayat polls in Goa on Saturday out of a poll of 7,91,814 eligible voters.

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