Panaji, Jan 7 (PTI) In a sharp retort to ally MGP’s move to field the party chief for upcoming Shiroda assembly bypoll in Goa, a senior minister Monday said if the MGP was not happy with functioning of the Manohar Parrikar-led dispensation then it should “walk out and let the government fall”.

State Art and Culture Minister and Independent MLA Govind Gawade also said the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) should stop its habit of “blackmailing”.

The BJP-led state government is supported by the MGP, Goa Forward Party (GFP) and three Independent MLAs.

The MGP had recently announced to field party president Dipak Dhavlikar from Shiroda Assembly seat, which was represented by Subhash Shirodkar of Congress before he joined BJP last October.

Another Congress MLA Dayanant Sopte, who represented Mandrem seat, had also crossed over to BJP along with Shirodkar.

“Why is that MGP always blackmails? If they are not happy with what is happening in the government or what BJP is doing, then they should withdraw the support and let the government fall,” Gawade told reporters.

Recalling that the MGP had filed a writ petition in the high court against Shirodkar and Sopte, Gawade saidthe MGP went to court against BJP stating what the party did was wrong.

“If that is the case, why are you in the government? Withdraw the support. Don’t use blackmail tactics every time,” he added.

The MGP had last November moved the High Court seeking restraint order on Sopte and Shirodkar from contesting by-elections for the BJP.

Political situation in Goa continues to be fluid in the wake of extended absence of Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar from office due to his failing health.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.