2 Goa Cong leaders en route to Delhi to join BJP: sources

Panaji (Goa) [India], Oct 16 (ANI): Two Goa Congress legislators, namely Dayanand Sopte and Subhash Shirodkar, have left for New Delhi to reportedly join the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). According to sources privy to the matter, Sopte and Shirodkar are slated to meet BJP national president Amit Shah in the national capital at around 9:30 am on Tuesday. Both the leaders left by a midnight flight to Delhi and were accompanied by Union Minister of state for AYUSH Shripad Naik. Sopte, who defeated former BJP chief minister Laxmikant Parsekar in the 2017 State legislative assembly election, represents Mandrem constituency, while Shirodkar was elected on a Congress ticket from Shiroda constituency. The developments come amid demands from the opposition parties for a floor test to be held for the BJP to prove majority in the Assembly. Last month, Congress legislators had approached Goa Governor Mridula Sinha, urging her to invite them to form the government in the state owing to Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar's health. Currently, Congress has 16 MLAs in the Goa Legislative Assembly and if two legislators resign, the party's strength would be reduced to 14. The ruling BJP has 14 MLAs while three each are from Goa Forward Party, Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party, and independent candidates, respectively. One legislator is from the Nationalist CongressParty (NCP).
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