Goa Congress MLAs Issue Notice For Removal of Assembly Speaker Pramod Sawant
Goa Congress leader Ramakant Khalap | (Photo Credits: ANI)

Panaji, Sept 21: Mounting pressure against the ruling BJP-led coalition in the state, the 16 legislators of Congress issued a notice on Friday seeking the removal of Assembly Speaker Pramod Sawant.

The move came days after the party staked claim to form an alternate government, contending that the government has lost majority in the Assembly. The government is headed by Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar who is hospitalised in Delhi for a pancreatic ailment. Goa CM is 'Threatening People' From Hospital Room, Says Congress.

The notice for removal of Sawant was given under "Rule 243 of Rules and Procedure and Conduct of Business of the Legislative Assembly of Goa, read with Article 179C of the Constitution of India," Leader of Opposition Chandrakant Kavlekar said.

Rule 243 states provision for moving a resolution to ask for permission of the House to discuss about impeachment of the Speaker.

Kavlekar, however, refused to specify on what grounds it wants Sawant to be removed as the Speaker, saying the reasons will be spelt out on the floor of the House.

The legislators said they propose to move the motion to remove Sawant from the office of Speaker of Legislative Assembly at the end of 14 days' notice period.

"We cannot discuss the grounds for giving notice right now. When it comes up for discussion on the floor before voting, we will disclose our grounds," Kavlekar said.

When contacted, Sawant said, "prima facie, I don't find any merit in such a resolution but for the sake of reasonability, I will check the legality of such a resolution when it is brought to my notice."

Earlier this week, the Congress party had met Governor Mridula Sinha and urged her to direct the BJP-led government to carry out a trust vote in the Assembly.

The party wanted a special one-day session of the Assembly to be convened for it at the earliest. The BJP has 14 seats in the Assembly, its allies Goa Forward Party and MGP have three each. Three Independents and an MLA from Nationalist Congress Party also support the BJP.

(With PTI inputs)