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Senior Congress leader Pratapsing Rane greeting new GPCC president Luizinho Faleiro at the Congress House in Panaji on Tuesday. Other Congress leaders present on the occasion were Pandurang Madkaikar, Francisco Sardinha, Irfan Mulla, Shantaram Naik, Jennifer Monserrate, Ravi Naik, Vishwajeet Rane, Joaquim Alemao, Atanasio Monserrate and others.

Reach out to people, Luizinho tells Cong leaders

PANAJI: In an apparent sign that he has returned to the state for revival of the party organisation, Luizinho Faleiro, new president of the Goa Pradesh Congress Committee, Tuesday called upon the Congress leaders to reach out to the people to understand their problems so as to find solution to them and attract them towards Congress.
Addressing a big gathering of party workers and leaders to mark his takeover of the charge of the post, Faleiro called upon Congress leaders to talk less and work more. He said he would be reaching out to the people to know their views and asked his party men to follow suit. “Our mission in days ahead would be to perform or perish,” he said.
The Congress needs foot soldiers for its revival, he said adding that there is no place for mere babus or clerks in the organisation. “We have lost a battle but not the war,” he told the gathering even as he cautioned Congressmen not to air their grievances to the media but sort out the same within the party. “Tear me into pieces if I have done something wrong within the precincts of Congress office,” he said even as he cautioned the Congress leaders and cadres from washing their dirty linen in the public.
The party meeting saw a gathering of most of the Congress leaders, which was also an indication of ‘reconciliation’ among them. Senior Congress leaders including Pratapsing Rane and other legislators, former presidents – Ravi Naik, Francisco Sardinha, Subhash Shirodkar, most of former legislators, including Joaquim Alemao, Aleixo Sequeira, etc were present for the meeting.
Faleiro said that the results of the assembly and Lok Sabha elections were shockingly bad, which brought the morale of the party workers at the lowest ebb, but he said that they (workers) have, in them, inherent energy and more particularly, an immense love for the Congress party and that he is sure that they would leave the defeat behind and work for success in the future. “Let me reassure you that Congress has immense potential within it, which we have to tap for the good of the state. My only role is that of a catalyst in that process,” he said adding that Congress was a mass-based party, which has its strengths and glorious history. “We have made mistakes. We have to accept our mistakes in all humility,” he added.
He said that he was feeling nostalgic while addressing the Congressmen. “It is with mixed feelings I welcome you,” he said adding that on the one hand, it is nice to be back with the Congress family in Goa, while on the other hand, it is sad to note that the party organisation in Goa is passing through a critical stage.
Urging his party men to relearn the concept of sacrifice, he told them not to hanker after power as an end but pursue it only as a means to an end. “Please don’t regard me as a competitor – I have no other interest except the Congress party and Goa,” he told the gathering adding that the magic formula of unity and discipline would lead to strengthening and consolidation of the organisation.
“I am grateful that I got everything in Goa. I was born in Goa and the state has given me the highest honour by giving me the opportunity to serve as its chief minister. I am here today to repay that debt,” he said. He turned emotional on seeing the large crowd at the Congress House as he stepped out of the vehicle in the morning.
Faleiro, who has served as AICC general secretary of Northeastern states and was a witness to the pattern of assistance they get from the Centre, said that the Congress party would support any move by the state government to obtain financial assistance from the Union government as well as getting Goa declared as a special category state.
Earlier, Pratapsing Rane, leader of opposition in the state assembly, said that the party was longing for Luizinho and that he has finally arrived on the Goan scene. “The Congress party will be revived under the leadership of Faleiro and it would return to power,” Rane said. Rane further said that unity in the party was very much visible on Tuesday, even as he went on to add that everybody has to work for the revival of the party so as to help it return to power and carry forward the development and find employment opportunities for the unemployed. “We need good cadres and we should refrain from pointing fingers at others,” he said.
He urged the government to take steps to prevent “arrival” of Ebola in the state as it could do more harm to the state’s tourism sector and economy, which is already facing the effect of suspension of mining in the state. He said that the state could be selective in allowing the tourists who arrive here.

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