close

News WrapGet Handpicked Stories from our editors directly to your mailbox

Goa: 2 MGP MLAs break away from party, merge legislative wing with BJP

Legislators Manohar Ajgaonkar and Dipak Pawaskar gave a letter to merge the MGP legislature party with the BJP to officiating Goa Assembly Speaker Michael Lobo at 1:45 am. Photograph:( ANI )

PTI Panaji, Goa, India Mar 27, 2019, 07.40 AM (IST)

Two of the three MGP MLAs in Goa early Wednesday merged their party's legislative wing with the BJP, which now has 14 legislators in the 36-member state assembly.

Legislators Manohar Ajgaonkar and Dipak Pawaskar gave a letter to merge the MGP legislature party with the BJP to officiating Goa Assembly Speaker Michael Lobo at 1:45 am.

However, Sudin Dhavalikar, the third Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) MLA, has not signed the letter.

While Ajgaonkar is tourism minister, Dhavalikar is a deputy chief minister in the BJP-led state government in Goa.

As two out of the three MLAs have merged the legislative wing, they are saved from inviting anti-defection law, which makes it mandatory that two-thirds of the strength should agree for merger.

The legislators broke away from the MGP and formed a group, MGP (two) on Tuesday. They have now merged the legislative unit with the BJP.

Lobo confirmed that he received the letter at 1:45 am from both the MLAs for merging their legislature party with the BJP.

The signature of Dhavalikar is not there on the letter, he said.

The mid-night political drama has increased the strength of the BJP from 12 to 14 in the 36-member House, bringing them on par with opposition Congress which has an equal number of MLAs on the floor.

The MGP is an alliance partner of the BJP in Goa since 2012.

Story highlights

Legislators Manohar Ajgaonkar and Dipak Pawaskar gave a letter to merge the MGP legislature party with the BJP to officiating Goa Assembly Speaker Michael Lobo at 1:45 am