Goa LIVE News and Updates: Goa chief minister Pramod Sawant, who on Wednesday accepted at least 10 rebel Congress MLAs into the BJP, said, 'They have supported me to strengthen the state government and I welcome it.'
Goa LATEST News and Updates: Goa chief minister Pramod Sawant, who on Wednesday accepted at least 10 rebel Congress MLAs into the BJP, said, "They have supported me to strengthen the state government and I welcome it."
The chief minister is likely to meet Home Minister Amit Shah and BJP working president JP Nadda with the MLAs on Thursday. On Wednesday, he said, "They had come for the development of the state and their constituency. They have not put forward any condition, they have joined BJP unconditionally."
The meeting comes a day after a group of the Congress MLAs in Goa led by Leader of Opposition in the Assembly Chandrakant Kavlekar merged with the ruling BJP, increasing the saffron party's strength to 27 in the 40-seat house.
Sawant, who is in Delhi, was quoted by PTI as saying that a decision on dropping any minister from the coalition partners in the state will be taken after meeting senior BJP leaders, including Shah and party's working president JP Nadda.
The Goa Congress on Wednesday alleged that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was not only attempting to have 'One Nation One Election', but 'One Nation One Party'.
The remark came after 10 of the 15 Congress legislators merged with the BJP in Goa late on Wednesday.
In a statement, Congress' Goa unit president Girish Chodankar said the BJP has exposed its "intense insecurity" with its coalition partner and within its camp by inducting ten Congress MLAs in their camp.
"Despite having clear numbers on the floor of the House, BJP chief minister Pramod Sawant indulging into such unethical means has displayed his fear to face the united Opposition for the upcoming Assembly session," he said.
Furthermore, Chodankar claimed that the 10 legislators who merged with the BJP have fallen prey to blackmailing and other "luring tactics" adopted by the BJP by "taking advantage of their weaknesses."
"Is this the new India that the BJP advocating after the Lok Sabha election?" he asked.
Continuing his tirade against the ruling party, the Congress leader said the entire episode reflected of "utter misuse of power" by the saffron party.
"This is also a lesson to its alliance partners who went against the mandate of people in 2017 and installed BJP in power. This was the day in waiting as they disrespected the common people. It is time for the Congress to go back to the grass root level and expose the BJP. The move of ten MLAs switching sides will not augur well with the electorate who will defeat the BJP and its cronies once again, repeating the performance of 2017," he said.
"People are watching this naked game of destruction of democracy and they will certainly teach a lesson to those involved in this utter shameful act of murdering Democracy," Chodankar added.
The 10 Congress MLAs who severed ties with the grand old party are – Chandrakant Kavlekar, Isidore Fernandes, Francis Silveira, Filipe Neri Rodrigues, Jennifer, Atanasio Monserrate, Antonio Fernandes, Nilakanth Halarnkar, Clafacio Dias and Wilfred D'Sa.