Hours after BJP declared its first list for the 2022 Goa Assembly elections, infighting in the party came to the fore with Deputy Chief Minister Chandrakant 'Babu' Kavlekar's wife Savitri Kavlekar deserting the party and decided to contest as independent from Sanguem.
The BJP has denied a ticket to the Savitri, who was claiming a BJP ticket to contest from the Sanguem Assembly constituency. BJP has fielded Subhash Phal Dessai from Sanguem.
Savitri was confident of getting BJP's ticket and has already begun her election campaign in Sanguem. Recently, she held several public meetings in Sanguem as a show of strength to the party.
She announced her resgination at a press conference on Friday. "BJP has done grave injustice to me and my supporters who have been working tirelessly to campaign with me since last few months," she said.
"It has also been double standards by the BJP as it has denied ticket while allotting tickets to husband-wife duo in Taleigao and Poreim. The party has assured ticket to us all this while denied us ticket at the last minute, all of us are deeply saddened and pained," she added while also claiming that she will contest as an independent from Sanguem.
Apart from Savitri, a large number of BJP workers also resigned from the primary membership of the party and pledge their support to Kavlekar.
In the 2017 Assembly elections, Prasad Gaonkar, who contested as Independent, defeated Subhash Phal Dessai(BJP) and Savitri Kavlekar (Congress). However, post elections, Gaonkar extended support to the BJP-led government but withdrew midway following differences with Chief Minister Pramod Sawant. He has joined Congress and will contest from Sanguem as the grand old party's candidate.
The election for the 40 seats will take place on February 14, and the ballots will be counted on March 10.