Congress MLA Vishvajeet Rane quits from party

Panaji (Goa) [India], Mar. 16 : Congress MLA Vishvajeet Rane on Thursday submitted his resignation from his post and also from the grand old party.

Protem speaker Siddharth Kuncalienkar has however, asked Rane to rethink about his decision. Earlier in the day Congress Legislative Party (CLP) leader Chandrakant Kavlekar said, "We have tried to find out if he (Rane) is somewhere even in washroom but could not find him.

Tried to contact Vishwajeet Rane but could not reach. He was with us since morning. He signed on our whip also. He is not traceable yet. We are waiting for his response. Once he gives us a reason we will decide what action we would take. Even his father doesn't know where he is." Days after a group of the Congress' Goa legislators blamed the central leadership for failure to form the government in the state despite being the single largest party after the assembly polls, Rane said that he, along with five to six other MLAs, would quit the party if party vice-president Rahul Gandhi does not respond adequately to the letter written to him by them.

Rane and his group of legislators wrote a letter Gandhi complaining about the senior Congress leadership.

In the letter, he said that the senior leaders were responsible for the party losing out on the opportunity to form the government in the state.

Rane asserted that it was shocking how despite having people's mandate in the form of 17 seats in the assembly, the situation was mismanaged by the people in charge of affairs in Goa.

He further said that he would meet Gandhi and try to draw out a conclusion. Meanwhile, Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar, who faced the crucial floor test today in the state assembly, established victory as 22 MLAs stood in his support.

16 MLAs opposed Parrikar's candidature as the Chief Minister, while one MLA was absent. Parrikar, who stepped down as Defence Minister, was sworn-in as the chief minister of the coastal state for the fourth time on Tuesday evening, along with nine ministers.

But with the Congress challenging his appointment, citing Goa Governor Mridula Sinha did not follow the procedure as dictated by the Constitution, the Supreme Court earlier this week asked the test to be conducted today.

A special assembly session was convened for the purpose. Parrikar had claimed the support of 22 legislators, two more than the halfway mark in the 40-member Assembly.

The BJP bagged 13 seats in the polls, while it claimed the support of three MLAs each of the Goa Forward Party and Maharashtravadi Gomantak Party, besides three independents.

The Congress won 17 seats..

Source: ANI