Taking Precedent From Karnataka, Congress to Stake Claim For Govt Formation in Goa
Congress is the single-largest party in the 40-member Goa assembly with 16 legislators | (Photo Credits: PTI)

Panaji, May 17:Taking precedent from Karnataka, where Governor Vajubhai Vala invited the single-largest BJP to form the government, the Congress has staked claim to form the government in Goa.

Although the government in Goa was formed with the requisite majority by the BJP in March 2017, the Congress had emerged as the single-largest party -- with 16 seats in the 40-member assembly.

The BJP, however, had stitched a post-poll pact with the Goa Forward Party, Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party and independent legislators. The allies' major condition was: Manohar Parrikar, the then Defence Minister, should return back as the Chief Minister.

With Parrikar gone for an extended medical treatment in the US, the Congress sees an opportunity to strike back at BJP in terms of realpolitik. The party's state unit chief, Jitendra Deshprabhu, has sought an appointment from Goa Governor Mridula Sinha to parade his legislators and press for a floor test.

"What is wrong with us attempting to stake claim over the government. We have 16 MLAs and therefore, we are clearly the single-largest party," he said. The BJP had won 13 of the 40 seats last year.

"The Chief Minister is absent, the entire governance is in the mess. Being the single-largest party, the Governor should invite us to form the government. Didn't the same happen in Karnataka," Prabhu added.

The Goa Forward Party, an ally of the Manohar Parrikar government, has condemned the approach of Congress at a time when the CM is undergoing treatment for pancreatic cancer in New York.

Former Goa Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar also lashed out at the Congress for its "opportunism".

"On the ground they have no issues to challenge us. So now, they want to pull down the government of Manohar Parrikar. But their efforts will be in vain," he said, while speaking to a news channel.