goa cabinet
On Saturday, the four legislators took oath in presence of Chief Minister Pramod Sawant.Twitter/ANI

Three Congress defectors -- Chandrakant Kavelkar, Jennifer Monserrate, Filipe Nery Rodrigues -- and BJP MLA Michael Lobo, who resigned from the post of Deputy Speaker, joined the Pramod Sawant-led BJP government as ministers. On Saturday, these four legislators took oath in presence of Chief Minister Pramod Sawant.

The recent development came soon after four ministers -- Deputy Chief Minister Vijay Sardesai, Rohan Khaunte, Vinod Paliencar, and Jayesh Salongakar were sacked from the ministry to accommodate the Congress MLAs who defected to the BJP.

Earlier, Sawant had sought the resignation of four of his ministers -- three of Goa Forward Party and an independent, but they refused.

Speaker Rajesh Patnekar has said that the Assembly will function as the per schedule.

Speaking to news agency ANI, Patnekar said, "Though new ministers have been inducted, the Assembly will go on as per the schedule. The new ministers will have to study their portfolios while answering questions on the floor of the House." "As far as I am concerned, there is no rescheduling of the Assembly and the Congress party will have to give the name of Leader of Opposition by Monday," he added.

On the night of July 10, Chief Minister Sawant had gone to Delhi along with 10 MLAs to meet senior BJP leaders including working president JP Nadda and Home Minister Amit Shah to discuss the development. Following this, the rebel MLAs joined the Bharatiya Janata Party.

With 10 MLAs changing the sides, the strength of Congress on the floor of the House has been reduced to five.

The MLAs who defected include Kavlekar, Isidore Fernandes, Francis Silveira, Filipe Neri Rodrigues, Jennifer, Atanasio Monserrate, Antonio Fernandes, Nilakanth Halarnkar, Clafacio Dias and Wilfred D'Sa.

(With agency inputs)