Refused BJP Ticket, Son Of Ex Chief Minister M Parrikar Draws A Line

NDTV News

Goa Election: Utpal Parrikar, an engineering graduate, has been pushing for Panaji for months.

New Delhi:

The BJP today announced its first lot of candidates for Goa with a big omission – Utpal Parrikar, the son of former Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar. The party has rejected Utpal Parrikar for his father’s seat Panaji and chosen Congress alum Atanasio “Babush” Monserrate instead.

Utpal Parrikar is reportedly firm on contesting from Panaji and has refused the BJP’s offer of two other seats. “I will clear my stand soon,” he told reporters.

The BJP’s Devendra Fadnavis said Utpal had been offered two other options. “We feel he should accept it. BJP has always given respect to the Parrikar Parivar,” Mr Fadnavis said, hoping to stave off a revolt.

already has an offer from Arvind Kejriwal, who tweeted shortly after the BJP released its Goa list.

“Goans feel very sad that BJP has adopted use-and-throw policy even with the Parrikar family. I have always respected Manohar Parrikar ji. Utpal ji is welcome to join and fight elections on AAP ticket,” Mr Kejriwal tweeted, sharing an NDTV report.

Last week, Shiv Sena’s Sanjay Raut had appealed to opposition parties to support Utpal Parrikar if he fell out with the BJP and contested as an independent.

Manohar Parrikar, a three-time Goa Chief Minister and the BJP’s top leader in the seaside state, died in office in 2019. He held the Panaji constituency for 25 years.

Babush Monserrate, who was his lifelong rival, has now been assigned his constituency over his son.

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In the byelection after Mr Parrikar’s death, Babush Monserrate won as a Congress candidate but later switched to the BJP.

Utpal Parrikar, an engineering graduate, has been priming for a Panaji contest. He has been meeting people in the constituency and has also visited temples over the past few months, while declaring that he is ready to fight polls.

But in a clear hint that things would not go his way, Mr Fadnavis had said no one should expect to be a candidate just because they are family.

“Manohar Parrikar did a lot of work to establish the BJP in Goa. But nobody gets a ticket in the BJP just because they are the son of Manohar Parrikar or some leader. If they have worked, they are considered,” Mr Fadnavis had said.

The BJP did give in to “Family First” in Goa when it came to two other leaders, whose wives have been named candidates as well.

The party has fielded not just Babush Monseratte but also his wife Jennifer Monseratte from the Taleigao constituency. Goa minister Vishwajit Rane and his wife Divya Vishwajit are both on the list. Divya Vishwajit has been pitted against her father-in-law Pratapsinh Rane, the Congress candidate from Poriem constituency.

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