Panaji, July 13: Days after 10 Congress legislators in Goa joined the BJP, enhancing the political crisis, Assembly Speaker Rajesh Patnekar on Saturday said the reshuffle in the state cabinet will have no bearing on the schedule of the monsoon session. The monsoon session is slated to commence from Monday onwards and end on August 9.
Speaking to the media on the reshuffle, Patnekar said, as quoted by news agency ANI, "Though new ministers are being inducted, the assembly will go on as per schedule. New Ministers will have to study their portfolios while answering questions on the floor of the House. Congress will have to give the name of the leader of opposition by 15 July." Goa Political Turmoil: 10 Rebel MLAs of Congress Formally Join BJP; No Clarity on Cabinet Reshuffle Yet
Asked about the lawmakers jumping ship and joining BJP, the speaker added, "As far as I am concerned there is no rescheduling of the Assembly session and Congress party will have to give the name of the Leader of Opposition by Monday."
Earlier, Chandrakant Kavlekar, Philip Nery Rodrigues and Atanasio Monserratte joined BJP on Wednesday, along with seven others. All these leaders will be sworn in at Raj Bhavan in the afternoon, along with Deputy Speaker Michael Lobo. However the Patnekar mentioned that new ministers will have to study their respective portfolios before replying to the questions in the House.
Considering the political chaos in Goa, with 10 Congress lawmakers joining BJP, the total strength of the BJP rose to 27. Congress is left with only five members in the State Assembly. The total strength of the legislative house is 40.
(With Inputs From Agencies)