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Goa BJP in dilemma over chief ministerial candidate

india Updated: Jan 17, 2012 11:47 IST

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Battling differences within the party, the BJP on Sunday said it was yet to decide on whether to project any chief ministerial candidate before the Assembly polls.

"We have all the options open (for chief ministerial candidate). As and when we decide, we will let you know," senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley told reporters in Panaji on Monday.

Jaitley was in Goa to flag off 'Jana Sampark Abhiyaan' which will travel through 35 constituencies over the next fortnight.

Polls in Goa will be held on March 3.

The party is divided over the issue of chief ministerial candidate for the forthcoming poll. While one group is supportive of former chief minister Manohar Parrikar to lead the party in assembly, there is another group supporting Sripad Naik, a Member of Parliament.

"Sripad (Naik) is one of the pillars of the party," Jaitley said, adding that the party will soon decide whether he should be shifted to state politics or be retained in Delhi adding, Naik will abide by the decision of the party.

Naik represents North Goa constituency in Lok Sabha and has been a leader of the influential Bhandari community.

Responding to a query, Jaitley termed party's openness for alliance with the regional forces in Goa for the forthcoming elections as 're-polarisation' of political forces.

"Repolarisation of political forces is not unknown," he said, adding an alliance with Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) in Goa is justifiable as it weakens the ruling regime.

MGP, Goa's oldest political party, has been sharing power in Congress-led state government in Goa.