MLAs sorry for riding bikes sans helmet to attend Assembly in Goa
Panaji: A day after his colleagues rode their motorcycles to the Goa Legislative Assembly Complex without wearing helmet, BJP MLA Michael Lobo, a member of the bikers team, tendered apology on Saturday for their "conduct" even as the transport minister promised inquiry into the incident.
"Definitely we are at fault. I apologise on the behalf of all MLAs who violated the rule", said BJP legislator Michael Lobo.
Lobo rode pillion with State Fisheries Minister Avertano Furtado on his bullet to arrive at the legislative Assembly complex to attend the ongoing proceedings yesterday.
The "bike tour" caused a flutter as the law-makers, majority of them from ruling BJP, did not wear the protective headgear while they drove on the busy national highway. "As legislators we should not have broken the rules", Lobo added.
Nine MLAs, including five from BJP, three independents comprising a minister and a Goa Vikas Party (GVP) legislator were part of the squad.
One of the BJP legislators Carlose Almeida drove the bike without a number plate, which is an offence under Motor Vehicle Act.
"All the legislators were in a lighter mood when they decided to ride up to the Assembly complex which is 4 kms away from Panaji city. One has to travel on the highway to reach to the assembly complex", Lobo said.
The MLA said that it did not appear to him and others that the opposition and media would take up the issue so seriously.
"We did not violate the rule intentionally. We agree that nobody is above the law", the first-time MLA said.
Interestingly, all the legislators who violated the norm belong to the ruling camp.
Meanwhile, State Transport Minister Ramakrishna Dhavalikar said he would initiate inquiry into the violations. "The conduct of the MLAs sends a bad message", he said.
Deputy Director of Transport, Manuel Afonso told PTI that the officials of his department were not present on the highway when MLAs crossed.
"We are busy with other enforcements like checking the bus overloading, issuing licences and others. Traffic police were stationed at the bridge", he said.