Chief Minister Pramod Sawant on Wednesday dropped his Deputy Chief Minister Ramakrishna ‘Sudin’ Dhavalikar from the cabinet, claiming that the senior MGP leader did not adhere to the common minimum programme of the coalition government.
In a communiqué addressed to Governor Mridula Sinha, Sawant informed her about the dropping of Dhavalikar from the state cabinet.
Dhavalikar was allotted the portfolios of transport, public works department and river navigation, which will be now held by the Chief Minister.
“The Governor of Goa is pleased to accept the recommendation of the Chief Minister that Ramakrishna alias Sudin Dhavalikar shall cease to be a minister in the council of ministers headed by the Chief Minister, with immediate effect,” a notification issued by Varsha Naik, joint secretary of general administration, stated.
Dhavalikar vacated his cabin at the Secretariat soon after his removal. It must be noted here that Dhavalikar could enjoy the position of the Deputy
Chief Minister hardly for a week.
Sawant told media persons at the secretariat that coalition partners had worked out the common minimum progamme when the new government was being formed on March 18 after the demise of former chief minister the late Manohar Parrikar.
“One of the conditions in the common minimum programme was that no alliance partner would contest the Shiroda assembly byelection. But MGP president Pandurang ‘Deepak’ Dhavalikar refused to withdraw from contesting the Shiroda bypoll,” he said.
Speaking about the MGP chief’s stubbornness vis-à-vis the Shiroda byelection, the Chief Minister said, “We can’t help him if he can’t see beyond the party’s interest.”
The Chief Minister maintained that the split in the MGP was not engineered by the BJP or his government.
“Both the MLAs had not been feeling secured in the MGP. They had also been apprehensive of their removal from the party. That is why they broke away…,” he noted.
Sawant also said that MGP contesting the parliamentary elections will have no impact on the winning prospects of BJP’s candidates – Shripad Naik (North) and Narendra Sawaikar (South Goa).