A specially constituted bench of the high court of Bombay at Goa deferred the hearing of the petition, filed by Congress challenging Goa assembly speaker Rajesh Patnekar’s order dismissing the disqualification petition filed against 10 former MLAs who defected to the BJP in 2019, till September 22 after petitioner's counsel Kapil Sibal was not available.
The disqualification petition against the 10 Congress legislators, including revenue minister Jennifer Monserrate and Panaji MLA Atanasio Monserrate, was filed by Congress Goa state party president Girish Chodankar and later another petition was filed by Dhavalikar against two of the party’s MLAs who defected to the BJP, including current Deputy CM Manohar Ajgaonkar.
Patnekar had kept the disqualification petition filed before him pending for more than 20 months and issues the order after Supreme Court directed him to decide the matter.
Earlier, Goa Congress party president Girsh Chodankar had said that he would pursue the case, including the complaint filed with Goa police alleging that 10 Congress turned BJP MLAs had forged documents to suggest that Congress had merged with BJP.
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