The base of the Trinamool Congress has solidly spread from the eastern part of the country to the furthest point in the western region.
Veteran Goa politician Wilfred D’Souza, chief minister of the state thrice, is set to join the party.
D’Souza’s entry will open the Trinamool chapter in Goa and the party will contest assembly polls there in March.
“The formal announcement of D’Souza joining the Trinamool Congress will be made on January 1, which is our foundation day. He was inspired by the honest image of our leader (Mamata Banerjee) to join the party,” Trinamool general secretary Mukul Roy told HT.
He became a cabinet minister in 1982, when Goa was still a Union Territory. The longest duration of his three chief ministerships, all in the 1990s, was of 11 months.
Trinamool leaders are claiming in private that the growing importance of West Bengal chief minister Mamata Banerjee and her honest image are attracting senior politicians.
On December 26, D’Souza, 85, visited Kolkata and met Roy, who is also Union MoS for shipping, and expressed his desire to join the party. Later he met Banerjee.
“D’Souza has been fighting corruption in Goa. He is one of the senior-most politicians of that state. Like Banerjee, who ended the 34-year rule of the CPM in West Bengal, he was instrumental in ending the 16-year-old rule of the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak party in Goa,” said a Trinamool leader.
D’Souza, popularly known as Willy, was with the Congress and later moved to the NCP.