The Congress on Monday staked claim to form the government in Goa in the absence of Chief Minister and Bharatiya Janata Party leader Manohar Parrikar, reported ANI. However, Governor Mridula Sinha is yet to meet the legislators who signed the letter.

Parrikar, who has been suffering from a pancreatic ailment for the past few months, was admitted to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in New Delhi on Saturday. Urban Development Minister Francis D’Souza and Power Minister Pandurang Madkaikar are also currently in hospital.

“[We] submitted two memorandums and requested that situation to undergo election within 18 months shouldn’t arise,” Congress Legislature Party chief Chandrakant Kavlekar told ANI. “People elected us for five years. If present government is not capable of functioning, we should be given the chance, we will do it. We are single largest party, should have been given the chance earlier.”

On Sunday, Goa Pradesh Congress Committee President Girish Chodankar said the party has never hesitated to play the role of a constructive Opposition. “We have already cautioned Honorable Governor Her Excellency Dr Mridula Sinha about a possible ploy by the BJP to fraudulently impose President’s Rule in Goa, through the back door,” FirstPost quoted Chodankar as saying. “We urge her [Governor Sinha] once again, that the Congress should be given an opportunity to form a stable government in Goa, in view of the prevailing political chaos in the state.”

The Congress’ move came days after the party wrote to the governor claiming that the chief minister may dissolve the Assembly before its term ends as he was “losing grip” over his allies. Earlier in the month, the Opposition party demanded that President’s rule be imposed in the state, claiming it was facing a “constitutional crisis” in Parrikar’s absence.

In the 40-seat Goa Assembly, the BJP has 13 MLAs but is in alliance with the Goa Forward Party and the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party, both of which have three seats each. Three independent candidates are also allied with the BJP.

The are also rumours of a rift between the BJP and its allies.The Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party said on Saturday it was “high time” that Parrikar handed over the charge to the seniormost minister. The next day, the BJP said Parrikar would not be replaced. “There is no issue about the government and there is no demand of change in leadership from anyone,” said party leader Ram Lal.