Panaji: Goa Speaker Rajendra Arlekar today said that if Governor Mridula Sinha approves the state cabinet's decision to pardon imprisoned Goa Vikas Party legislator Fransisco Miccky Pacheco then he will be allowed to participate in the proceedings in the ongoing session.
"It is the decision of the cabinet. It does not bother me. I will allow him to participate in the assembly, if he is pardoned. Whatever cabinet has decided is strictly the decision of the state government," Arlekar told PTI.
Pacheco who is currently undergoing six month imprisonment in an assault case was recommended pardon by state cabinet. The resolution of the cabinet has been referred to the Governor for vetting but she is yet to give her consent on the matter.
Meanwhile, Goa deputy chief minister Francis D'Souza today defended the cabinet's decision to pardon Pacheco claiming that it is era of reformation.
"The current is era of reformation. We should not punish the criminals. We should try to reform them. There are instances wherein the sentences are reduced," D'Souza said on the sidelines of ongoing session.
The Goa Vikas Party MLA, who is in jail for the last two months, had applied for parole to participate in the ongoing state Legislative Assembly session. However, before filing his parole plea, he had also moved a mercy petition before the state government seeking a waiver of the jail sentence.
"His mercy petition was considered by the state Cabinet. All the ministers have signed the resolution," sources in the Cabinet said today.
The Cabinet approval was granted on Wednesday afternoon. Thereafter, the file was sent to Governor Mridula Sinha for her approval and would be sent back to the state home department after the Governor's signature, sources added.