Responding to the news about Goa Education Minister Atanasio alias Babush Monserrate's detention at Mumbai airport with unauthorised currency early on Saturday morning, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)on Saturday evening demanded that he be asked to resign or sacked by the Chief Minister.

At a specially convened press conference here on Saturday evening, Opposition Leader and senior BJP leader Manohar Parrikar lashed out at the Congress Minister who, he said, was facing many criminal cases and had crossed all limits. “Being the Education Minister, he is setting a bad example before the people by all his actions and needs to be asked to resign or sacked immediately by Chief Minister Digambar Kamat,” he said. Mr. Monserrate has several cases including a criminal case of instigating violent crowd to attack the police headquarters a couple of years back while he was an MLA..

Mr. Parrikar said while the budget session of the Legislative assembly was on, the Minister had supposedly obtained leave of absence from the Chief Minister, which intimated Governor and Speaker about his proposed foreign visit. The Chief Minister should have clarified before the people if he was informed by the Minister while he was leaving for Dubai.

On the other hand, Chief Minister Digambar Kamat told journalists on Saturday that he would not react to the issue based on media reports.

“Unless I get an official report from Customs about the case, why should I react to media reports?” , he said in a bid to evade the controversy.

Interestingly, Mr. Monserrate, in his capacity as Education Minister was at present in the eye of a storm over the issue of medium of instruction in primary education.

A forum formed by sympathisers of regional languageshad recently demanded his resignation. Family, friends and relatives of Mr. Monserrate declined to give any information on the episode involving his detention at Mumbai airport.

Digambar Kamat refuses to comment based on media reports

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