Panaji: Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi on Thursday held discussions with office bearers in Goa, during his first ever visit to the state after his party faced humiliating defeat in the assembly elections early this year.

Gandhi who arrived this morning was accorded a warm welcome by Goa Pradesh Youth Congress Committee workers led by state chief Pratima Coutinho at Cortalim junction, almost 15 kms from here.

Later, he headed towards International Centre Goa (ICG) where he held meetings with party office bearers including village panchayat, block, district and state committee representatives.

Gandhi also held meetings with party members of legislative assembly and also candidates who lost the polls.

All India Congress Committee General secretary Jagmeet Singh Brar, Secretary P Sudhakar Reddy, Leader of Opposition Pratapsingh Rane and former Chief Minister Digambar Kamat were also present for the meetings.
    
Goa Pradesh youth Congress Committee President Pratima Coutinho said issues like casino operations, closure of mining industry and tourism were discussed with Gandhi.
    
"We are expecting him to take up this issue in the Centre," she said, adding the mining issue was prominently discussed.
     
"Few representatives from the mining belt wanted him to intervene in the matter and resolve the issue," she added.
     
The mining industry in Goa has come to standstill after Supreme Court ordered halt on the activity. The state economy is fearing worst ever recession due to the stoppage of mining.
     
Gandhi later addressed National Executive of National Students Union of india (NSUI) members.
     
In the March assembly polls, BJP-Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) alliance won 24 seats in the 40-member Goa legislative assembly while the Congress alliance managed only nine seats, with coalition partner NCP.

(Agencies)

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