Will Manohar Parrikar be BJP’s Goa CM candidate or did Nitin Gadkari just do a Manish Sisodia?

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Updated: January 13, 2017 1:54:17 PM

Union minister Nitin Gadkari may have done a Manish Sisodia by indirectly suggesting that chief ministerial face of BJP in Goa could be Manohar Parrikar

manohar parrikar, nitin gadkari, sripad naik, goa cm, manohar parrikar goa, parrikar goa, goa parrikar, goa assembly election 2017, goa election, goa assembly election, goa news, goaUnion Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar attends a seminar during the Vibrant Gujarat investor summit in Gandhinagar, India, January 12, 2017. (Reuters)

Union minister Nitin Gadkari may have done a Manish Sisodia by indirectly suggesting that chief ministerial face of BJP in Goa could be Manohar Parrikar. There are only two leaders from the state currently serving as Union ministers — Manohar Parrikar, a former Goa CM and now Union Defence Minister, and Sripad Naik.

Speaking to reporters on Thursday, Gadkari said BJP would win big in Goa and the next CM could be one of the elected MLAs or a central party leader. Gadkari, however, refused to reveal if he was hinting at the prospect of making Parrikar or Naik the next CM of Goa.

A few days ago, Delhi Deputy CM Manish Sisodia had done something similar to Gadkari by asking people in Punjab to vote for AAP by considering party convenor Arvind Kejriwal as their CM candidate. Sisodia’s appeal raised speculations that Kejriwal may shift base to Punjab if AAP manages to win in the upcoming Assembly election in the state. However, later Kejriwal said he will not leave Delhi.

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Speaking at an election rally in Mohali on January 10, Sisodia told supporters to vote thinking they were voting for Kejriwal and believe that Arvind Kejriwal would be their CM. “Whoever be the CM, the promises made to people of Punjab would be fulfilled by Arvind Kejriwal only,” he said.

Sisodia’s appeal provided Congress and SAD-BJP an opportunity to attack AAP as they alleged Kejriwal’s party was trying to foist an “outsider” as CM in Punjab. On January 12, Kejriwal clarified AAP’s CM candidate for Punjab would be someone from the state itself, not someone from outside.

ALSO READ: Arvind Kejriwal to dump Delhi for Punjab? Here’s why you shouldn’t take Manish Sisodia seriously

The BJP has not declared its CM candidates in states where it is fighting alone. The saffron party is banking on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s charisma, especially in Uttar Pradesh.

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In Goa, the BJP is facing anti-incumbency and one more opponent in the form of AAP. At present, the party has 21 out of 40 seats in Goa Assembly. Gadkari predicted that BJP would win by a bigger margin in the polls to be held on February 4 and the elected MLAs would choose their leader democratically.

When pointedly asked if Parrikar or Naik could be the CM, the former BJP president remarked, “Anyone selected by the MLAs can become the leader…even from the Centre.” He further said BJP is fighting the election under the leadership of Manohar Parrikar, CM Laxmikant Parsekar, Sripad Naik and Vinay Tendulkar, who is Goa BJP president.”

However, Gadkari’s remarks have only managed to trigger a guessing game, just like Sisodia did.

(With PTI input)

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