Goa Assembly dissolved

Sandesh Prabhudesai, Panaji | 27 February 2002 17:35 IST

Chief minister Manohar Parrikar today afternoon confirmed that Governor Mohammed Fazal signed an order to dissolve Goa Assembly, as recommended by his cabinet today morning

The Raj Bhavan also later confirmed that the 32-month old House is being dissolved and Parrikar, along with his cabinet, will continue as the caretaker government.

Addressing the media after returning from the Raj Bhavan, Parrikar said the governor has accepted his contention that the BJP should be allowed to seek people’s full mandate to come back to power.

All the minister today attended the hurriedly called cabinet meeting, claims Parrikar, except information minister Sanjay Bandekar, who is out of station. "It is an unanimous decision", he added.

He also denied that this was a pre-emptive move on his part as some of his cabinet colleagues were planning to split and form an alternate government in collusion with the opposition Congress.

The existing BJP government was formed in November 2000 last year, after taking rebels from other parties into it. "That was a fractured mandate as only 10 legislators of the BJP were actually elected in the 40-member House", said Parrikar.

According to Parrikar, the dissolution was recommended by the cabinet as per Article 174 (2) B of the constitution, which becomes mandatory on the governor.

As the budget session was convened on 13 March, the governor then summoned the advocate general and the law secretary to consult whether the recommendation can be accepted in such a situation. He then signed the order in the afternoon.

This is the first time the House is dissolved in Goa in such a manner. The earlier Assembly was also dissolved prematurely, but only after it witnessed series of defections, which led to instability.

Parrikar admitted that attempts were on to topple the BJP government, which had come to power with fractured mandate, by spreading series of rumours and creating confusion in the ruling party.

"It is better we face the people and come back to power in full strength", said the chief minister. He is fully confident of winning elections, claiming that recently held panchayat elections had helped them to come to power in majority at grassroot level.

Stating that the BJP was brought to power due to defective policies of the then ruling Congress, he said fresh elections will give the BJP an opportunity for better governance.

Though last Assembly polls had brought the Congress to power, the then Luizinho Faleiro government was toppled within 11 months with rebel leader Francisco Sardinha splitting from the ruling party, to form a coalition with the BJP.

Sardinha however could rule only till November 2000 last as the BJP withdrew its support and formed a full-fledged BJP government by engineering further defections into the Congress and admitting them in the saffron camp.

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