Goa Heads for Hung Assembly; Close Fight Between Cong, BJP

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Panaji : Goa today appeared heading for a hung Assembly with ruling BJP and opposition Congress unlikely to cross the half-way mark in the 40-member House, putting the spotlight on smaller parties in government formation.

As the results of 30 out of the 40 seats were out, Congress secured 11 seats followed by BJP winning 10 seats.

Regional outfits Goa Forward and Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) have won three seats each. While NCP emerged victorious in one seat, Independents won two constituencies.

In the remaining 10 seats, BJP and Congress are leading in four each. A Congress-backed Independent is ahead in one seat and recounting is on in another segment.

BJP had 21 seats in the outgoing House in Goa, where it came to power in 2012.

The saffron party has suffered a big setback as Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar lost from Mandrem. His Cabinet colleagues Dayanand Mandrekar (Siolim) and Dilip Parulekar (Saligao) also lost.

Prominent Congress winners included former chief minister Digambar Kamat.

Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), which entered the fray with much fanfare, failed to make any impact at the hustings.

The Goa Suraksha Manch, floated by RSS rebel Subhash Velingkar, and Shiv Sena, also failed to make any breakthrough though their alliance partner MGP romped home in three seats.

MGP had severed ties with BJP just before the February 4 polls and became part of the three-party front.