New Delhi: The Congress and the BJP were locked in a verbal duel today over government formation in Goa and Manipur with the saffron party being accused of "stealing" the mandate of people using money power, a charge rejected as baseless.
The rival parties clashed on a day when Manohar Parrikar was sworn in as chief minister of Goa heading a BJP-led government and Biren Singh, leader of the BJP Legislature Party in Manipur, being invited by Governor Najma Heptulla to form the next government in the north-eastern state.
Goa and Manipur threw up a hung verdict with the Congress emerging as the single largest party in both the states behind BJP but the saffron party showed support of majority MLAs to be invited to form the government.
Both the BJP and Congress also expressed confidence that things would go in their favour in the floor test ordered by the Supreme Court in Goa Assembly on Thursday.
Crying foul, Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi joined the chorus of party leaders denouncing the BJP, accusing the saffron party of "undermining democracy" in Goa and Manipur by use of money power.
Gandhi also alleged that the Goa Governor acted in a "partisan" manner.
"These all are baseless allegations," Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh told reporters.