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Cong totters on verge of a split

Panjim: In a dramatic move that caught Congress unawares, Valpoi MLA Vishwajit Rane took oath as legislator, walked out of the Assembly hall without voting in the confidence motion and a little later announced his resignation from the Congress.He told media persons that three other Congress MLAs too wanted to boycott the floor test but he asked them not to do so.The Rane-led rebellion may witness a vertical split in the Congress, robbing whatever chances it may have been nurturing of dislodging the BJP from power anytime soon as the three MLAs may join hands with Rane.The other three who are likely to desert the party are Taleigao MLA Jennifer Monserrate, St Cruz MLA Tony Fernandes and St Andre MLA Francis Silveira.
Jennifer, the lone Congress woman MLA, has already spoken out against the party leadership and is likely to walk out of the Congress. Fernandes, on the other hand, has said he will do whatever his ‘boss’ Atanasio (Babush) Monserrate asks him to.Rane has not yet announced his future plans though chances of him floating a regional party or joining hands with the BJP cannot be ruled out.Rane junior, while claiming he would return to the Assembly with increased votes, charged AICC General Secretary Digvijay Singh of behaving like another tourist in Goa. Singh is being seen as the villain in the Congress debacle since, instead of trying to bring all the factions together, it appears that more friction has been created within the party. [H]

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