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Saturday, April 2, 2011

Goa Minister found carrying 50 crores in cash

BJP demands sacking of Monserrate: Goa

The BJP today demanded that Goa Education Minister Monserrate be dropped from the state cabinet, saying it will not allow the Assembly to function till it happens.

Goa Education Minister Atanasio Monserrate was detained at the Mumbai airport in the wee hours today for allegedly carrying unaccounted foreign and Indian currency.

The Minister was detained for possessing undisclosed US dollars at the airport, airport sources said. The sources also said that he may have been carrying foreign and Indian currency beyond permissible limits.

It was not clear as to where the minister was headed to. Monserrate's elder son Rohit was arrested in 2009 for allegedly raping a minor German girl in Goa.

In February, Pakistani singer Rahat Fateh Ali Khan was detained for allegedly carrying about Rs 60 lakh of undeclared foreign currency at the Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi.

The minister was detained at the Mumbai airport this morning for reportedly carrying USD 10 million and Indian
currency worth Rs 25 lakh.

Leader of Opposition Manohar Parrikar said the party is determined not to allow the Assembly to function till the minister is immediately sacked. The BJP has also called for an emergency legislature wing meeting on Sunday to decide its future course of action in the matter.

"We have been exposing how state ministers are involved in corrupt practises," BJP legislature wing spokesman Damodar Naik said. Also, we are charting out our future course of action, he said.

Chief Minister Digambar Kamat on the other hand said they are 'waiting and watching' the situation at this juncture.

"Let's wait before we jump to the conclusion. If the minister has really done something wrong, then we will take the action," Kamat told PTI.

The former UGDP (United Goan Democratic Party) leader recently joined the Congress and represents Taleigao constituency next to Panaji.

Goa Pradesh Congress Committee President Subhash Shirodkar, however refrained from commenting on the issue.

"I am not in a position to comment on this right now. Because I do not know what exactly happened," he said.

Monserrate, who was inducted into the cabinet in 2008, has more then 14 criminal cases filed against him including a case for attacking Panaji police station in 2009.

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