Utpal Parrikar quits BJP, to contest Goa election from Panaji as independent candidate

Utpal Parrikar announced to contest the Goa polls from the Panaji seat as an Independent candidate.

Utpal Parrikar had asked the BJP to field him from the Panaji seat.

A day after being denied the Panaji seat by the BJP in its first list of candidates for the Goa elections, former CM and late BJP leader Manohar Parrikar’s son Utpal Parrikar has resigned from the party. Manohar Parrikar was elected from the Panaji seat five times serving the constituency for 25 years. Utpal also wanted to contest from the same seat but the BJP preferred to field sitting MLA Babush Monserrate from the seat. Monserrate, who was earlier with the Congress, had switched sides to join the BJP. He was a lifelong rival of Manohar Parrikar.

Utpal Parrikar announced to contest the Goa polls from the Panaji seat as an Independent candidate. Addressing reporters this evening, Utpal said that the time has come for him to take a stand for his values. Utpal said that he tried to convince the party that he enjoys the support of party members and the general people of Panaji but was denied a ticket from the seat.

While releasing the BJP candidate list, the party’s Goa in-charge Devendra Fadnavis had yesterday said that Utpal was offered two alternatives but he did not choose any of them. While maintaining that Utpal is like a family for the BJP, Fadnavis had said that the party was in touch with him to convince him to settle for another seat.

Yesterday, opposition leaders including Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) convener and Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal and Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut had voiced their support for him. While Kejriwal had invited him to contest the poll on an AAP ticket, Raut had offered support to him if he contests from the seat as an independent candidate.

Goa assembly elections will be held on February 14 and the counting of votes will take place on March 10.

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