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Rane Government to probe IFFI expenditure

By Our Staff Correspondent

PANAJI, FEB. 20. The Goa Chief Minister, Pratapsinh Rane, has said that the Government would not hesitate to probe "controversial dealings" of the Bharatiya Janata Party Government, including the expenditure on the International Film Festival of India (IFFI) and the working of the Goa State Infrastructure Development Corporation (GSIDC).

Mr. Rane said this at a public meeting organised in Margao on Saturday to rally support for the Congress-led government in the State. He was responding to the All-India Congress Committee general secretary, Margaret Alva's demand for a probe into the expenditure incurred on the IFFI. Blaming his predecessor, Manohar Parrikar, for "holding the IFFI like a carnival," Mr. Rane said unnecessary expenditure had been incurred by the Government for hosting celebrities.

Earlier, Ms. Alva sought a thorough probe into the dealings of the previous government and said Mr. Parrikar was "the pocket edition of the Gujarat Chief Minister, Narendra Modi." She said that the Congress would protect the interests of the Goans.

Ms. Alva also sought action against two former Ministers, who had allegedly vandalised a hotel in Mapusa. Justifying the scrapping of the pre-employment scheme launched by the Parrikar Government, she said it was a "back-door entry" for youth with Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh leanings into government departments and even the police force.

The Union Ministers, Mani Shankar Aiyer and Priyaranjan Das Munshi, said Goa was fortunate to have S.C. Jamir as Governor. Justifying the dismissal of Parrikar Government, the Ministers said the Congress was prepared to face the BJP's attack in Parliament.

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