Sandesh Prabhudesai in Panaji
Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar on Wednesday afternoon announced that Governor Mohammed Fazal had accepted his cabinet's recommendation to dissolve the state assembly.
Addressing mediapersons after returning from the Raj Bhavan, Parrikar said the Governor accepted his contention that the BJP should be allowed to seek the people's full mandate.
The dissolution was recommended by the cabinet as per Article 174 (2) B of the Constitution, which becomes mandatory on the Governor, he said.
The Governor had taken the advice of the state advocate general and the law secretary before signing the order, Parrikar said.
The Raj Bhavan later confirmed that a formal order was being issued to dissolve the 32-month old assembly and added that the Parrikar ministry would continue as the caretaker government till fresh elections are held,.
Earlier in the day, all the ministers, except Information Minister Sanjay Bandekar, attended a hurriedly convened cabinet meeting to discuss the issue, he said.
"It was an unanimous decision," he added.
He denied that the decision was a pre-emptive move to thwart plans by some of his cabinet colleagues to split and form an alternate government along with Congress MLAs.
The BJP government was formed in November last year by absorbing rebels from other parties.
The Raj Bhavan confirmed that a formal order has been issued to dissolve the 32-month old assembly. The Parrikar ministry will continue as the caretaker government till fresh elections are held, the Raj Bhavan said in a statement.
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 had witnessed series of defections.
Meanwhile, the opposition Congress in Goa has demanded President's Rule in the state rather than allowing the Bharatiya Janata Party to rule the state, after dissolving the House.
Luizinho Faleiro, the state opposition leader, has also alleged that the BJP-led government by Manohar Parrikar has abused governor's office by misinforming him when the Cabinet had actually not authorised him to recommend dissolution.
Claiming that the issue of dissolution did not figure on the official agenda of the Cabinet, Faleiro said that the governor should have at least verified the facts before dissolving the House.
"We have lodged a protest against the governor for taking a decision to dissolve the assembly without consulting the opposition parties," an angry Faleiro said.
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