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Governor ignored our letter to stake claim to form government, says Digvijaya Singh

The lack of proper coordination between the newly elected 17 MLAs and the top party leadership has cost the Congress party dearly in Goa. Despite emerging as the single largest party just short of a majority, the Congress failed to cross...

India TV Politics Desk, Chandigarh/Panaji [Published on:14 Mar 2017, 2:50 PM IST]
File pic of Digvijaya Singh
File pic of Digvijaya Singh

The lack of proper coordination between the newly elected 17 MLAs and the top party leadership has cost the Congress party dearly in Goa. Despite emerging as the single largest party just short of a majority, the Congress failed to cross the half-way mark required to stake claim to form the government.

Facing flak from prominent party legislators from the state over his alleged ‘mismanagement’ that resulted in the missed opportunity, Congress party’s general secretary in-charge of Goa Digvijaya Singh today accused Governor Dr Mridula Sinha of not inviting the Congress to form government and thus favouring the BJP, which emerged as the second largest party by wining 13 seats in a 40-member House. 

Singh, who chaired a meeting of the Goa Congress Legislature Party here, said that the party had submitted a letter to the Governor on Sunday seeking appointment to stake the claim but she overlooked it.

"We wanted to stake the claim on March 12 itself. We had given her the letter on that day itself but still she (Governor) did not give us an appointment," Singh.

"Despite established principle and Constitution, the Governor did not call us to form government but gave a chance to the second largest party (BJP)," Singh added. 

Sinha has already invited the BJP-led alliance led by Manohar Parrikar to form the government and the swearing-in is scheduled this evening. 

In the 40-member House, the Congress has 17 seats followed by BJP which has 13. The Goa Forward Party and the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) have three seats each, the NCP has one seat and there are three independents. 

"We will inform the Governor that we have the required number of legislators to form the government. If we are allowed, we can prove our majority on the floor of the House," CLP leader Chandrakant Kavlekar said after the meeting. 

The Congress last night made a representation to the Governor asking her to invite the party to form the government in the coastal state. 

The CLP claimed that the party has the support of required number of legislators and is in a position to prove its majority on the floor of the House. 

"Our political opponents (BJP) despite losing the mandate of the people have tried to misrepresent to your good-self that they enjoy the majority support of legislators. This is not only opportunism at its lowest but is also not constitutionally permissible," Kavlekar had said. 

"Any post-poll alliance of the kind being projected by the BJP to seek the first invitation to form the government would defeat the people's mandate which has categorically rejected the incumbent government of the BJP," read the representation.

The Supreme Court, while hearing a petition by the Congress seeking directions to disallow Manohar Parrikar from taking oath as the Chief Minister, today questioned as to why the party had failed to make its position clear before the Governor. It also remarked why the Congress had failed to mention the number of MLAs it claims support of before the court as well as the Governor.  

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