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Babush to join Cong, says ‘ready’ to take on Bhai

Panaji: Former St Cruz MLA Atanasio ‘Babush’ Monserrate, who lost the 2017 assembly election in Panaji, will join the Congress to fight the byelection from the Panaji constituency in the event of its incumbent MLA, Sidharth Kuncalienker, vacating his seat to allow chief minister Manohar Parrikar to contest.”I am free to join any party, so I will join the Congress to contest the bypoll from Panaji,” Monserrate told TOI, adding that he was hopeful of a win despite not having a full-fledged team to work for him in the constituency. “Although I didn’t have a team to work for me in the run-up to the February 4 assembly elections, I lost by a small margin,” he said.
Certain of winning the support of the constituency’s minority community, who he claimed voted for the AAP in last month’s assembly election, Monserrate exuded confidence of defeating Parrikar in the forthcoming bypoll.”It was the minority community that voted the AAP, a move it is now regretting,” he said.Monserrate was keen on contesting the 2015 byelection from Panaji following Parrikar’s elevation to New Delhi as defence minister. At the last minute, he pulled out and actively backed Kuncalienker. He later said he would be happy to contest against Parrikar if he quit the defence ministry and returned to Panaji to battle it out in the assembly elections. [TOI]

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