Inching towards selecting candidates for both the Lok Sabha seats in the state, the Congress has made up its mind on nominating Goa pradesh Congress committee chief Girish Chodankar as the candidate for North Goa Lok Sabha constituency even as the party is yet to zero in on the three ticket aspirants as the candidate for the South Goa seat.
It is pertinent to note here that the name of former MP Ramakant Khalap had also been recommended by the state election committee of the Congress for the North Goa seat.
As for the South Goa seat, the Congress is seized with the names of former MP Francisco Sardinha, Goa pradesh Mahila Congress committee president Pratima Coutinho and renowned legal expert Cleaofato Coutinho Almeida.
Sources in the Congress said the candidates for both the Lok Sabha seats will be finalised by March 17.
The names recommended by the state election committee of the party were deliberated at a meeting of the screening committee held in New Delhi on Monday.
All-India Congress committee secretary and Goa desk in-charge Dr A Chella Kumar, Chodankar and Opposition leader Chandrakant ‘Babu’ Kavlekar took part in the deliberations.
The sources said that Chodankar has almost been finalised for the North Goa parliamentary seat, while Khalap has been considered as the candidate for the Mandrem by-poll.
The screening committee deliberated on the three names recommended by the state election committee for the South Goa seat.
Senior Congress leader and former chief minister Digambar Kamat and some party MLAs have been batting for Almeida as the Congress candidate for the South Goa seat.
However, at the meeting some members doubted Almeida’s popularity beyond Salcete taluka. They expressed concerns over nominating Almeida because his candidacy will send a wrong message among party workers as the legal expert has recently been getting closer to the Congress.