Goa political crisis: CM Pramod Sawant likely to drop some ministers to induct new ones in Cabinet reshuffle

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Published: July 11, 2019 12:36:47 PM

In a dramatic development on Wednesday, 10 Congress MLAs decided to switch sides to the BJP

Goa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant , pramod sawantGoa Chief Minister Pramod Sawant (ANI)

A day after as many as 10 of 15 Congress MLAs switched sides to join the ruling BJP in Goa, state chief minister Pramod Sawant is likely to undertake a reshuffle in ranks in his cabinet today to induct new ministers. As per a report by Hindustan times, chief minister Pramod Sawant may drop as many as four ministers from his cabinet to induct new ones. However, speaking to ANI, the CM said that no decision has been taken so far in this regard and that the central leadership will take a call on this.

“No decision was taken yet. The central leadership will take the decision regarding this,” Sawant said. Welcoming the MLAs to the BJP, Sawant added, “The MLAs will meet Home Minister Amit Shah and BJP Working President JP Nadda today. They have supported me to strengthen the state government and I welcome it.”

In a dramatic development on Wednesday, 10 Congress MLAs decided to switch sides to the BJP, bringing the total strength of the grand old party in the Goa Assembly to 5. On Wednesday, the disgruntled Congress MLAs led by Opposition leader Chandrakant Kavlekarmet state Assembly speaker Rajesh Patnekar and informed him of their decision to discontinue the grand old party. Those who tendered their resignations from the Congress are Jeniffer Monserratte, her husband Atanasio Monserratte, Philip Nery Rodrigues, Francis Silveira, Wilfred DSa, Cleaofacio Dias, Nilkant Halarnkar and Isidor Fernandes.

“10 of us entered into BJP today, just because CM is doing good work. I was Leader of Opposition, despite that development work in our constituency could not be done,” Chandrakant Kavlekar later told ANI. Sawant was present in the state Assembly soon after the MLAs met the House Speaker, giving rise to speculations that Congress MLAs might join BJP in the state.

The development comes amidst a political crisis in Karnataka where the ruling JDS-Congress coalition is hanging by a thread. As many as 15 JDS and Congress legislators have resigned even as the ruling coalition is making efforts to pacify them. The Supreme Court today asked the Speaker to meet these MLAs. In case he accepts their resignations, the strength of the coalition will drop to 101 compared to BJP’s 105 apart from two Independent MLAs.

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