Panaji, May 9 (IANS) Former Union Finance Minister Yashwant Sinha on Wednesday said that in the absence of the Chief Minister, one minister should be appointed to chair the Cabinet so that the official business of the state goes on unhindered.
“If one works within the spirit of the Constitution, in the absence of a Chief Minister, one person should get charge who can conduct a Cabinet meeting and the business of the state continues,” Sinha told the media here.
He was asked to comment on a three-member cabinet advisory committee appointed by ailing Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar to govern the state in his absence.
Parrikar has been absent from the state since the last two and a half months after he was first hospitalised for food poisoning and later shifted to the US for advance treatment for pancreatic cancer.
Sinha said the precedent was followed at the Central government level when a senior cabinet minister is appointed by the Prime Minister to oversee affairs in the latter’s absence.
His comments come on the day the Congress in Goa petitioned Governor Mridua Sinha, seeking dissolution of the committee and appointment of one minister as a replacement for Parrikar who according to BJP leaders is expected to return later this month.
“The ruling coalition should be directed to elect a new leader in place of Parrikar immediately,” state Congress President Girish Chodankar said.
“I wish to emphasize once again that the Constitutional mandate of Article 163 stands violated. Parrikar, may his health improve soon, is for the last several months unable to aid and advice you in any manner on account of his ailment.
“Therefore, there is complete breakdown of constitutional machinery in Goa.”