The Congress party, which lost out in forming government in Goa, today raked up the issue in Parliament, leading to sharp exchanges between the opposition and the ruling sides.
The members of the Congress even forced an adjournment of the Rajya Sabha for some time by agitating strongly against the role of Goa Governor Mridula Sinha, alleging breach of propriety and constitutional norms by her.
In the Lok Sabha, Congress leader Mallikarjun Kharge attempted to raise the issue while initiating the discussion on the Demand for Grants for Home Ministry for 2017-18 but was disallowed by Deputy Speaker M Thambidurai who said the conduct of a Governor cannot be discussed in the House.
Both Houses saw sharp exchanges between the opposition and the ruling sides.
In the Rajya Sabha, as soon as the House met for the day, Digvijaya Singh (Cong) said he has given a notice under Rule 267, which provides for setting aside of the business of the day, to take up "gross constitutional impropriety committed by Governor of Goa."
Reading out from an interview Sinha had given to a newspaper, Singh said she had reportedly said that she did not expect BJP to form the government in Goa.
According to the Congress leader, Sinha had also said that she had spoken to Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley before arriving at the decision to call the BJP to form the government ahead of the Congress which had emerged as the single largest party in Assembly elections.
Deputy Chairman P J Kurien said he had disallowed Singh's notice under 267 as the conduct of a Governor can be discussed only on the basis of a substantive motion.
Leader of the Opposition Ghulam Nabi Azad then said the conduct of Governor was discussed when the Arunachal Pradesh issue was debated in the House.
"Why don't you move a substantive motion," Kurien asked.
Disallowing the Congress members from raising the issue, the Deputy Chairman said, "No. I have to go by rules. You can bring a substantive motion, Chairman will consider it."
Azad said his party colleague Singh had not raised any issue regarding the conduct of the Governor but merely stated what she had said in an interview.
In the interview, he said, the Governor said she did not expect the BJP to form the government and that she had called Jaitley at 2130 hours on Sunday before inviting the BJP to form the government.
"How can the Governor seek permission of a Cabinet minister to form a government," Azad asked as Kurien insisted on a substantive motion for any discussion.
Singh said the House was supreme and a sense of members present can be taken and his notice under Rule 267 converted into a substantive motion.
Anand Sharma (Cong) said the Constitution clearly defines the duties and powers of Governor in appointing a Chief Minister and it does not anywhere state that the Governor is supposed to consult a serving cabinet minister.
"Constitution does not allow Governor to consult cabinet minister" for government formation, he said.
Kurien said if the Governor has violated the Consitution, a substantive motion can be brought.
"You are going by a newspaper report. I am not bothered about that. I have made it very clear that if you feel that the Governor has violated any of the provision of Constitution, please bring a substantive motion. I cannot allow you to discuss the conduct of Governor," he said.
Sinha had invited BJP to form the government after the recent assemble elections although Congress had emerged as the single largest party with 17 members in the 40-member House. Sitaram Yechury (CPI-M) joined in to say that Jaitley is answerable to the House since he is its member. To this, Kurien said if any minister has violated any provision of the Constitution, there can be a motion for that as well. "We can discuss that.
I have no problem." Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said the government is ready to discuss if the Congress brings a substantive motion. He went on to say that the opposition party by its continued protests was insulting the verdict of the people as also the ruling of the Chair. Congress members then trooped into the Well shouting slogans against what they said was "murder of democracy". Treasury benches also countered the slogan shouting. Kurien again said he was not against any discussion. "I am not denying or refusing any discussion... If you want to discuss (Governor's conduct), please give a substantive motion. I will also request Chairman (to consider it) and then we can have a discussion anytime." But Congress members continued to insist on a discussion. Singh said Jaitley is a member of the House and he can avail of his right to reply. He then went on to state that a substantive motion will be given. Azad said the House should be adjourned for an hour for the substantive motion to be framed and submitted and the same can be discussed thereafter. But this was not agreeable to the Chair or the treasury benches. As the slogan shouting continued, Kurien adjourned the House for about 15 minutes, till 1200 hours. In the Lok Sabha, Kharge voiced objection to the way the government was formed in Goa. However, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ananth Kumar said the conduct of a Governor cannot be discussed in the House at all. Deputy Speaker M Thambidurai, who was in the Chair, then gave a ruling that "conduct of Governor can not be discussed" and there is a process to discuss that.