Saying that issuing mere statements will not suffice, Goa Forward Party Chief Vijai Sardesai on Wednesday dared Ports Minister Michael Lobo to gove in writing to the Chief Minister stating he was opposed to coal and track doubling projects.
Sardesai asserted that those who oppose controversial projects should muster the courage to quit the Cabinet if the government does not agree to their demands.
Sardesai further said that Health Minister Vishwajit Rane should show guts and come out of the government if he is a true Maratha.
A day after the Ports Minister stated in Drampaur, Salcete, that the uprising against coal and track doubling is genuine, and that he and Salcete lone Minister, Filipe Neri Rodrigues, will go to any extent to decide in favour of the people, Sardesai said the time has come for Michael to write to the Chief Minister and express his stand on coal and track doubling.
“Michael should follow Health Minister Vishwajit Rane and write a letter to the Chief Minister opposing coal and track doubling. If the CM doesn’t listen, Michael should come out of the government. By quitting the Cabinet, these Ministers will not die politically,” he said while briefing the media on the sidelines of a programme held to launch a water line replacement project at Fatorda.
Expressing surprise that the two Ministers Michael and Neri have mustered the guts to take on the government on coal and track doubling projects, the Fatorda MLA said, “Michael’s choice of words in terming the agitation against these two projects as uprising are good. It is actually an uprising as the people of Goa have come to realize that Goa is being colonized and we all have to make sure that we come out of this colonization”.
He said the way the government is pushing coal indicates that the Sawantwadi government cannot give justice to the people of Goa. “The Chief Minister is only implementing the instructions and diktat from Delhi”, he added.
On Health Minister Vishwajit Rane’s letter to the Chief Minister, demanding scrapping of the IIT project from Melaulim, the Goa Forward Chief said Rane should quit the Cabinet if the Chief Minister does not scrap the project.
“Goa Forward has welcomed the decision of the Health Minister. But, he has to follow up by quitting the Cabinet if the government does not scrap the project. Rane should stand by the people and I am sure the people of Sattari will stand by him. The Health Minister has a bright future and should go forward with the people,” he said, adding that “Vishwajit Rane will die politically if he does not show guts and show that he is a true Maratha by quitting from the Cabinet.”