3 MLAs don’t show up for Goa Congress’ move to stake claim to form Government, Where are they?

After the Karnataka Governor invited the BJP to form the Government in Karnataka, the Congress was visibly disturbed. The BJP had staked claim to form the Government, and it was the single largest party, hence it was called. The Congress, however, began drawing parallels to other recent elections such as the one in Goa.

In Goa, the Congress had emerged as the single largest party with 17 MLAs. But call it complacency or a lethargic attitude, the Congress never staked claim to form the Government. In fact, the Congress party was busy deciding who would be the CM. Many Congress MLAs had also gone on record blasting the central leadership for the opportunity wasted.

Today, the Congress has conveniently chosen to forget his episode. Now, the Congress wants to equate the situation with Karnataka. While Rahul Gandhi’s twitter account has decidedly become a troll on social media, the Goa Congress too wanted to don this role. The state unit yesterday decided to parade their MLAs (now 16) in front of the Governor, to “stake claim to form the Government” by virtue of being the single largest party.

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Today, the Congress legislators came to meet the Governor but may have ended up embarrassing themselves. Instead of the total, only 13 turned up:

The 3 missing MLAs are Jennifer Monserrate, Subhash Shirodkar and Isidore Fernandes. Jennifer is one of the MLAs who had openly criticised Digvijay Singh last year. Subsequently, her husband former MLA Babush Monseratte switched from Congress to regional outfit Goa Forward, which is in alliance with the BJP. With just 13 MLAs physically present, Congress falls behind BJP which has 14 MLAs.

Newly appointed Goa Congress President Girish Chodankar, who himself lost the bye-elections in Panaji recently, stated that 1 MLA was sick and in the hospital and 2 were “out of station”.

This absence comes on the heels of Amit Shah’s visit to Goa last week. Prior to this meeting, Goa BJP MLA Vishwajit Rane (another former Congressman who had recently switched sides) had declared that many Congressmen were in touch with BJP and would even try to meet Amit Shah when he arrived in Goa.

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