In a setback back for the BJP ahead of the assembly elections in Goa, Minister Michael Lobo and party MLA L.A. Pravin Zantye on Monday resigned from the party as well as the assembly on Monday.
Lobo, who represented the Calangute assembly constituency and held charge of the state port and waste management departments, submitted his resignation to the chief minister’s office and the Goa assembly’s speaker in the morning.
He is likely to join the Congress, reports said.
“I have resigned from both the posts. I will see what steps are to be taken next. I have also resigned from the BJP,” Lobo later told reporters.
Asked whether he will join the Congress, Lobo said he is in talks with other political parties. He claimed that people were unhappy with the ruling BJP in the coastal state.
“The voters told me that the BJP is no more a party of the common people,” he said while claiming that the grass-root level workers were feeling ignored by the party.
A couple of hours later, Zantye, who represented the Mayem assembly segment, also tendered his resignation from the BJP and the state assembly.
Zantye told reporters that he had joined the BJP at the behest of former chief minister Manohar Parrikar, and claimed that after the latter’s death, he was sidelined in the party.
Zantye alleged that his constituency faced the problem of unemployment, which the state government “failed” to address.
The Election Commission of India on Saturday announced that elections to all 40 Assembly constituencies in Goa would be held on February 14.
The BJP, Congress, Goa Forward Party (GFP), Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP), Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), Trinamool Congress Party (TMC), and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) are the main political parties in the fray.