Goa

Utpal Parrikar, son of former Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar, denied Assembly ticket from Panaji

Published : January 21, 2022 13:24 IST

Utpal Parrikar. Photo: ATISH POMBURFEKAR

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has denied Utpal Parrikar, former Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar’s son, a ticket to contest the upcoming Goa Assembly election.

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has denied Utpal Parrikar, former Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar’s son, a ticket to contest the upcoming Goa Assembly election. A few weeks ago, Utpal Parrikar had expressed an interest in contesting from the Panaji constituency, which was his late father’s bastion. However, Devendra Fadnavis, in-charge of the party affairs in Goa, said Utpal Parrikar was not entitled to the seat because he was a former Chief Minister’s son.

Utpal Parrikar did not feature in the list of 34 candidates for the Goa Assembly elections the BJP released on January 20. Utpal Parrikar said he will not contest from the two other constituencies offered as alternatives by the BJP. He said he will consider standing as an independent or look at the other parties to contest from Panaji.

Fadnavis said the party did not want to alienate Utpal Parrikar as Manohar Parrikar was a highly respected and popular Chief Minister, but were unable to give him the Panaji seat. “We feel he should accept the alternative offer. The BJP has always given respect to the Parrikar parivar,” said Fadnavis.

Anatasio (Babush) Monserrate, the sitting Member of the Legislative Assembly (MLA) from Panaji, will contest from the State’s capital. A former Congressman, he was Manohar Parrikar’s arch rival in the Panjim area. However, after Manohar Parrikar’s death in 2019, Monserrate defected to the BJP and won the byelection from Panaji.

Utpal Parrikar has been vocal about Goa’s unethical politics. In an interview in December, he had said: “The kind of politics that is happening in Goa, I cannot tolerate it. It is not acceptable to me. Are they suggesting that only winnability is the criteria [and that] integrity doesn’t matter? Character doesn’t matter? And you are going to give the ticket to a person who has criminal antecedents and we have to sit home quietly? This is not only about Panaji. What is happening in Goa politics is not acceptable. It has to change. Which is what I am trying.”

Utpal Parrikar has been touring the constituency regularly and reaching out to constituents in recent weeks. He has said on several occasions that he wanted to uphold his father’s legacy.