AAP leader, ex Goa Congress chief file nominations

Panaji: Former state Congress President and now BJP candidate for the Shiroda Assembly by-poll Subhash Shirodkar and state AAP General Secretary and North Goa Lok Sabha candidate Pradeep Padgaonkar filed their nominations for their respective seats on Wednesday.

Shirodkar was elected on a Congress ticket in the 2017 state Assembly polls but had quit the party to join the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in 2018, necessitating a by-poll in the Shiroda Assembly constituency.

He filed his nomination papers in the presence of Chief Minister Pramod Sawant and other state BJP leaders.

“I, along with the BJP, will take forward the vision of development in the Shiroda constituency which has been laid by late Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar,” Shirodkar said after filing his papers.

He faces a tough battle against the Congress’ Mahadev Naik, Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party’s Deepak Dhavalikar and Goa Suraksha Manch’s Santosh Satarkar.

Former journalist and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) General Secretary Pradeep Padgaonkar also filed his nomination papers for the North Goa seat on Wednesday.

“The people of Goa are tired of incompetent MPs and corrupt politics, which is why we see a strong swell in favour of the AAP in Goa,” Padgonkar told reporters.

The key contestants for the North Goa parliamentary seat are four-term sitting MP and Union Minister for AYUSH Shripad Naik and Congress state President Girish Chodankar.

On April 23, Goa will vote to elect representatives to two Lok Sabha seats and three Assembly constituencies where by-polls are being held on the same day.