Panaji: The issue of drug menace and illegal mining for natural resources is common to both Punjab and Goa, said AAP MP Bhagwant Mann on Sunday.

He also said that Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Aadmi Party chief Arvind Kejriwal’s public meeting here on May 22 would change the manner in which Goan voters look at the party as a political option.

“Goa and Punjab have similar problems in drug menace and illegal mining. In Punjab, you have illegal mining of sand, here it is (iron ore). And coincidentally both states are going to polls around similar time,” Mann said here.

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“The one way we believe the issue of drugs can be handled is proper counselling, coupled with employment opportunities. Both have to go hand in hand. This is what we are working on in Punjab,” Mann said, adding in the Punjab polls next year, the party was looking at bettering the electoral performance in New Delhi, where AAP won 67 out of 70 assembly seats in 2015.

Mann, a Lok Sabha MP from Punjab’s Sangrur, also said that in Goa, people were still fearing political vendetta and were perhaps reluctant to come out in open support of the AAP for now, but also added that the Kejriwal rally would change things.

“The Kejriwal rally will tip the scales. People right now are worried about political vendetta, but the rally will make their fear go away,” he said.

Top AAP officials including its national secretary Pankaj Gupta have said that the party would contest as many seats as possible in the 2017 Goa assembly elections.

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