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Goa trust vote today

By Our Staff Reporter

PANAJI, MARCH 3. While the 30-day-old Pratapsinh Rane Government will face the Assembly for the second time to seek the trust vote on Friday, the United Legislature Party (ULP) camp, led by the Congress, was confident of victory.

The lone United Goans Democratic Party (UGDP) MLA, Matanhy Saldanha, who backed the Bharatiya Janata Party defying the party directive, appeared before the pro-tem Speaker, Francisco Sardinha, today in connection with the disqualification petition filed against him by the Congress MLA, Jeetendra Deshprabhu.

The ULP, which has 16 MLAs apart from the Speaker, is one short of the BJP.

The UDGP senior vice-president, Radharao Gracias, who supported Mr. Deshprabhu's petition by his affidavit, told The Hindu at the Speaker's office that they were not dependent on any "qualification or disqualification." The Mormugao Lok Sabha member, Chruchill Alemao (Congress), joined him saying that they would win the trust motion by at least two votes. Mr. Sardinha told reporters after hearing Mr. Deshprabhu and Mr. Saldanha this evening that he would again hear them tomorrow morning. When asked whether there were any precedents for the present case, he said: "Even if there is no precedent and the law is clear, I don't mind setting a precedent." However, he made it clear that he would strictly follow the Constitution and relevant Rules.

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