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Goa MLAs to meet President Patil today

BJP chief Rajnath Singh will lead the delegation of MLAs in the wake of the GDA staking claim to form a government in Goa.

india Updated: Jul 28, 2007 13:05 IST

In an attempt to establish its majority in the Goa assembly, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is bringing its MLAs in New Delhi to prove their strength before President Pratiba Patil on Saturday.

According to the BJP sources, party president Rajnath Singh will lead a delegation of 21 legislators to Rashtrapati Bhavan in the wake of the party-led Goa Democratic Alliance (GDA) staking claim to form a government in the state where the Congress government has been reduced to be a minority.

The 49-day-old Congress government in Goa has been on the brink of collapse since the two-member Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) and an independent withdrew support. The crisis further deepened when the lone woman Congress legislator, Victoria Fernandes, quit the 40-member assembly. The Congress, which had 23 MLAs, is now reduced to 19 members.

Singh has alleged that Goa assembly speaker Pratapsinh Rane had acted "unconstitutionally" when he adjourned the house on Friday till Monday. He said the GDA was ready to prove its majority in the house on Friday itself.

Meanwhile, the Congress, which has despatched its general secretary in charge of Goa, Maragaret Alva, to Panaji to save the Digambar Kamat-led government, insists it has the constitutional right to save its government.

The BJP-led GDA that now includes the MGP, Save Goa Front and United Goans Democratic Party (UGDP) claims the support of 20 legislators.

Elections were held to the Goa assembly on June 2. The Congress-Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) combine has 19 seats. Smaller parties and independents played kingmakers, taking the strength to 23. The BJP had got 14 seats.

Goa, which has been witnessing political instability for the last two decades, has had 13 chief ministers and three stints of President's Rule since 1990 compared to three chief ministers between 1963 and 1990.

First Published: Jul 28, 2007 12:37 IST