Goa Forward Party, Fatorda MLA Vijai Sardesai commented on the demand of the BJP Schedule Tribes (ST) Morcha, saying that he respects Speaker Ramesh Tawadkar has nothing against him or the ST community. Sardesai claimed that he would be happy to see if BJP make Tawadkar chief minister of Goa.
On Tuesday, BJP ST Morcha members from Margao condemned the Fatorda MLA Vijai Sardesai for his statement that the speaker must work as per the people's demand and not as per the chief minister's wishes.
The ST Morcha members also threatened to stage a protest outside Sardesai's residence if he did not render an apology within 48 hours. Later, on Wednesday, Sardesai in a press briefing said that he is ready to give an apology if the speaker feels hurt by his comments.
“I respect the speaker of Goa as he is the custodian of the house. I demand that he increase the number of days in the assembly session because I want to raise several public interest issues, such as recruitment, the Mhadei water dispute, ST reservation issue, etc,” said Sardesai.
He further stated, “I am the people's elected representative, and I have to take up issues of the people. BJP's ST Morcha should not tell me what I should do.”
Sardesai also alleged that the BJP government is trying to systematically sabotage the voice of the opposition.
When asked whether this issue is being purposely blown out of proportion, Sardesai said that the government is trying to avoid pointed questions and the opposition. He said that he has stood for reservation measures and the upliftment of the ST community, and therefore the same community from the Fatorda constituency has supported him whenever needed.
Sardesai claimed that he is ready to meet Tawadkar in person and tender an apology if the speaker increases the days of the assembly session.