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Congress stakes claim to form the government after the death of BJP MLA Francis D’Souza

Soon after the Congress wrote to governor Mridula Sinha to form the government in Goa, the state BJP unit had called for a meeting of its MLAs at its Panaji office.

Amidst reports of the deteriorating health condition of Goa CM Manohar Parrikar’s, the Congress on Saturday staked claim to form the government in Goa after it claimed that the Manohar Parrikar-led BJP government has lost its majority in the Assembly following the death of BJP MLA Francis D’Souza.

According to the reports, Congress leader and leader of the opposition, Chandrakant Kavlekar has written a letter to Goa Governor Mridula Sinha, demanding the dismissal of the BJP-led state government. “Incumbent BJP led state government under the leadership of Manohar Parrikar, which has long lost the trust of the people, has also lost the strength of the house,” wrote Kavelkar demanding the Governor to call Congress to form the next government.

“It is therefore incumbent upon you to dismiss this state government and ensure that the Indian National Congress Party which is the single largest party in the august house and is presently enjoying the majority be called to form the government,” Kavlekar says in his letter.

The Congress had emerged as the single largest party with 17 MLAs after the state elections in February 2017. However, three Congress MLAs defected to the BJP to support the Manohar Parrikar government. Congress MLA Vishwajit Rane quit the party to become a minister in Parrikar’s government. Two other Congress MLAs Dayanand Sopte and Subhash Shirodkar quit the party in October last year to join the BJP who are facing a by-election along with the Lok Sabha elections bringing the BJP’s tally equal to Congress at 14 MLAs each.

Meanwhile, soon after the Congress wrote to governor Mridula Sinha to form the government in Goa, the state BJP unit had called for a meeting of its MLAs at its Panaji office. Deputy Speaker Michael Lobo speaking to the media said that an emergency meeting was called to finalise candidates for by-polls in three constituencies.

On reports that CM Parrikar’s health condition has worsened, Goa Forward Party chief Vijai Sardesai said that he was stable. “Don’t ask me medical terms. I am not making myself open to interpretations. This is not right. You have to respect this privacy. We are with him. CM’s office is saying he is stable,” Sardesai Said.

The Congress party claims to the form the next government comes at a time when Goa Chief Minister Parikkar has been admitted to the hospital following his deteriorating health condition. Meanwhile, Congress has also warned that “any action in violation of the constitutional mandate to invite the single largest party to form the government and any attempt to bring the state under President’s Rule will be undemocratic and illegal and will be challenged as deemed fit.”

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