PANAJI: The Goa Forward Party (GFP), an ally of the ruling coalition in Goa, said Monday the onus to ensure that the current government completes its full term lies with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) high command.
GFP president and Town and Country Planning Minister Vijai Sardesai said, "With or without Manohar Parrikar as the chief minister, the state government should complete its term."
His remarks came in the wake of the ill-health of Parrikar, 62, who returned to Goa Sunday from New Delhi, where he underwent treatment at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) for a pancreatic ailment.
Sardesai said BJP president Amit Shah called him Sunday afternoon to discuss the political situation in Goa.
"Amit Shah spoke to me and I have said no to mid-term poll. With or without Manohar Parrikar as the chief minister, this government should continue," he told PTI.
Referring to the BJP's commitment when the coalition was formed in Goa in 2017, Sardesai said the party high command, specially Shah, gave him an assurance that the government, which they formed with Parrikar, would continue for five years.
"We also want the same," he said.
"In the wake of our commitment to this government, the onus is on the BJP high command to fulfil their commitment and see that the government completes its tenure," he said.
"If they (BJP) want, they can go for dissolution but not going for dissolution will prove they keep their word. The people of Goa are watching them," Sardesai said.
The GFP leader also said the opposition Congress was "fishing in troubled waters" as it wanted the dissolution of the Assembly.
Accusing the BJP of acting "power hungry" in Goa, the Congress had Saturday demanded that Parrikar step down and it be allowed to prove majority by convening a special session of the state Assembly.
In the 40-member Goa Assembly, the Parrikar government has the support of 23 MLAs.
These comprise 14 BJP MLAs, three each from the GFP and the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) as well as three Independents.
The Congress is the single largest party in the Goa Assembly with 16 MLAs.
On Friday, Parrikar had met Goa BJP's core committee members and ministers from coalition partners at the AIIMS to discuss ways to ensure that his government functions normally during his absence from office due to ill health.
Leaders of the ruling BJP and its allies, who met Parrikar separately, had ruled out any change in leadership in the coastal state.
The core committee is the BJP's key decision-making body in Goa, comprising senior leaders like Parrikar, Union minister Shripad Naik and party state chief Vinay Tendulkar, among others.
Parrikar has been ailing since mid-February and has been treated at different hospitals, including those in Goa, Mumbai and the US.