The single-phase 2022 Goa assembly elections were held on 14 February for 40 seats, on which 301 candidates contested the polls. There were over 11 lakh eligible voters.
Corruption and mining were among the issues that dominated the election discourse.
“There was corruption in the Goa government in the handling of everything,” said former Governor and BJP leader Satya Pal Malik in an interview last year.
Following the closure of mining in Goa through a Supreme Court order, Aam Aadmi Party promised the resumption of mining activities within six months of coming to power in addition to an allowance for the unemployed. The Congress party also promised resumption of mining, saying “sustainable legal mining under the Supreme Court judgement” can be started.
Goa witnessed a multi-cornered contest, with AAP, the Trinamool Congress (TMC) and other smaller parties vying to make a mark on the state's electoral scene, in addition to the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party, the Congress party, and others.
The Congress party contested the election in an alliance with the Goa Forward Party (GFP), while the TMC allied with the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP).
The Shiv Sena and the Nationalist Congress Party had also announced a pre-election alliance, while the Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP contested on its own. BJP also contested the elections without a partner.
Besides these parties, The Revolutionary Goans, Goencho Swabhimaan Party, Jai Mahabharat Party and Sambhaji Brigade were also in the fray, in addition to 68 independent candidates
The prominent candidates in the elections included Chief Minister Pramod Sawant (BJP), Leader of the Opposition Digambar Kamat (Congress), former CMs Churchill Alemao (TMC), Ravi Naik (BJP), Laxmikant Parsekar (independent), former Deputy CMs Vijai Sardesai (GFP) and Sudin Dhavalikar (MGP), late CM Manohar Parrikar's son Utpal Parrikar, and AAP's CM face Amit Paleker.
The Times Now Exit Poll has predicted 16 seats for the Congress-led alliance and 14 for the BJP, which are both short of majority and suggest a tight contest.