“I also charge the CM of Goa with perpetrating a misdemeanour on Goa’s citizens, and the GST Council, by nominating him (Godinho) to represent your beautiful State,” Tamil Nadu FM said in a statement on Sunday while rejecting Godinho’s charge that he should apologise to the people of Goa.
He added further that the BJP should exercise minimal quality control in its MLA Acquisition procedures.
“Finally, I sincerely request the BJP, even across the political divide, to impose some minimal quality control on its MLA Acquisition’ procedures. If it had done so, Goa, and the nation would be saved a lot of pain,” Thiagarajan added.
He said Godinho’s statements at the meeting “were highly repetitive, largely vacuous, hectoring, mostly redundant to others’ inputs, supercilious, and with inputs from the Minister from Uttar Pradesh”.
Thiagarajan said there was no need for him to apologise to the people of Goa.
Thiagarajan stuck to his position that “One State-One Vote” mode of the GST Council was fundamentally unfair and he always believed in a truly federal governance model. “Every statement I made during the entire meeting was entirely consistent with these two principles,” he said.
Godinho on Saturday had demanded an apology from Tamil Nadu Finance Minister for insulting small states, Goa in particular, during the 43rd GST meeting chaired by Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday.
Addressing a press conference, Godinho, who represents the Goa government at GST Council meetings, said that the TN Finance Minister’s alleged comments dismissing the stature of small states in the Indian Union were condemnable, a day after Godinho and Palanivel Thiagarajan clashed with each other.
“The Finance Minister of Tamil Nadu should apologise. What is he trying to tell me? That he is against the Constitution of the country? Does he not believe in the Constitution of India? Does he not believe in equality before law? Does he not believe that whatever your status, whatever your standing in society, whether your constituency comprises of lakhs of voters or a few thousand voters, everybody has got one vote,” Godinho said.
“I want to remind the new Finance Minister of Tamil Nadu Palanivel, refrain from conducting yourself in a manner as a big brother versus small brother or big state versus small state. We all have equal rights. His attitude should be condemned by one and all right-thinking people. He should not target Goa,” Godinho said.
The Goa Minister said that during the meeting, Palanivel allegedly said that more attention should be paid to the sentiments of bigger states, rather than smaller states like Goa.
“I took offence at yesterday’s meeting because he said ‘what is Goa, it is a small thing, it is a small population. You should listen to me’, he was trying to tell the Union Finance Minister,” Godinho said, recounting the incident at the GST Council meeting on Friday.
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