Editorial : Murky swamp: on Goa politics

The midnight manoeuvres in post-Parrikar Goa raise disturbing questions
The drama of government-formation(गठन/निर्माण ) and Cabinet(मंत्रिमंडल )shuffle (फेरबदल) amid shifts in political allegiance(निष्ठा) in Goa serves as a reminder of the dark shadows(काली छाया) of manoeuvre(पैंतरेबाज़ी/तिकड़म) andintrigue(साज़िश) that lurk(छुपा रहना/घात में रहना) within Indian democracy(लोकतंत्र).
 Goa politics has for long been an arena(रणभूमि) of overnight(रातोंरात ) desertion(परित्याग/छोड़ भागना) and defection(दलबदल/भंग) . But the death of Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar earlier last month, and the midnight swearing(शपथ ग्रहण-)-in of Pramod Sawant, came against the backdrop of the ruling BJP’s aggressively(आक्रामक रूप) expansionary(विस्तार) phase. In this post-2014 phase, the BJP has been unabashed(शांत/स्थिर) about targeting(निशाना ) its allies(सहयोगियों ), as its partner in Goa, the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party, found out last week. Two of the MGP’s three MLAs in the Assembly joined the BJP. One of them, Manohar Ajgaonkar, was appointed Deputy Chief Minister hours later, replacing Sudin Dhavalikar, the third MGP lawmaker. The breakaway(तितर-बितर हो जाना/गोलमाल) faction(दल/हलचल) constituted a two-thirds majority in the MGP legislature(विधायक ) party(दल) , which just might safeguard the manoeuvre from the anti-defection provisions(प्रावधान) of the law. Thesplit(विभाजित/खंडित) of the MGP and the merger(विलय) of the splinter group(बिखेरने वाला समूह) with the BJP were all carried out in the dead of night, with Speaker Michael Lobo working his office through odd hours as if it were a national emergency.
In the 2017 Assembly election, the Congress had emerged(उभरा/प्रकट होना) as the single largest party with 17 seats in the 40-member House, and the BJP had 13 seats. Through a series of manipulative(जोड़ तोड़/छेड़छाड़ ) acts that raised questions of political propriety, the BJP managed(कामयाब/व्यवस्थित ) to form the government. To lead the rickety(गठजोड़ ) coalition(गठबंधन) with the MGP and the Goa Forward Party, the BJP brought Parrikar to the State. His death triggered the current round of jostling for power. The BJP sought to lure MLAs from supporting parties to reduce their collective(सामूहिक )bargaining (सौदेबाजी)power even as the new government was being formed. The MGP was trying to pre-empt the BJP bid by suspending(निलंबित ) one lawmaker to foreclose the option of a split in the legislature party, when the BJP struck first. The episode has underscored Goa’s disrepute(विवाद/बदनामी) as a theatre of absurdities(बेरुखी/विसंगतियां) of Indian democracy. There is speculation that the BJP is now targeting MLAs of the GFP and even the Congress. The BJP and the Congress have 14 MLAs each. The GFP lawmakers boycotted the swearing-in of Mr. Ajgaonkar, who has hopped from the Congress to the BJP to the MGP and back to the BJP. Some BJP leaders have rightly warned that such machinations will undermine(कमजोर/नष्ट करना) the party’s credibility(विश्वसनीयता). GFP leader Vijai Sardesai has sought(मांगी) clarity(स्पष्टता ) from the Chief Minister on his political plans. It is clear that the current government or any other combination(संयोजन/मेल ) will not inspire(प्ररेरित करना/रखो)trust and confidence in the people. If Goa is not to witness a sequence(परिणाम/श्रेणी) of party-hopping in search of ministerial berths and loaves of office, a fresh election might be the only answer.

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Designed By : Satnam Gill