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Goa elections 2022: Manohar Parrikar's son quits BJP, to contest from Panaji as independent candidate

Utpal Parrikar had marked his disappointment over not being issued the ticket from Panaji, the seat which his father had represented in the Goa assembly.

January 21, 2022 / 07:05 PM IST
File image of Utpal Parrikar (ANI photo)

File image of Utpal Parrikar (ANI photo)

Utpal Parrikar, the son of late former Defence Minister and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) veteran Manohar Parrikar, announced his exit from the saffron party on January 21.

Utpal Parrikar, who had marked his dissidence over not being issued the BJP poll ticket from Panaji, will contest from the constituency as an independent candidate in the February 14 elections.

"I will be contesting as an independent candidate from Panaji constituency," he told reporters, adding that it was time he stood up for his "father's values".

Panaji, the capital of Goa and one of the key assembly seats, was earlier represented by Manohar Parrikar who served as the state's chief minister for three tenures.

After Parrikar's demise in March 2019, BJP leader Atanasio Monserrate was elected as the MLA from the constituency in the by-elections. The party has retained him as the candidate for the polls to be held next month.

After issuing the party's list of candidates earlier this week, BJP's Goa in-charge Devendra Fadnavis suggested that Utpal Parrikar was given an offer to contest from another constituency.

"Sitting MLA in Panaji has been given the ticket. Utpal Parrikar or other members of Parrikar ji's family are like our family members. They are close to us. We gave two more options (seats) to Utpal Parrikar from where he can contest," Fadnavis told reporters on January 20.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, whose Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is leading a high-octane campaign in Goa, invited Utpal Parrikar to contest on the AAP ticket.

"Goans feel very sad that BJP has adopted use and throw policy even with Parrikar family. I have always respected Manohar Parrikarji. Utpalji is welcome to join and fight elections on AAP ticket," Kejriwal had tweeted.

The Shiv Sena, which has also entered the poll fray in Goa in an alliance with the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), had announced that they would support Utpal Parrikar if he decides to contest the elections.

""Utpal has to take the courageous decision to contest the elections. You need to be courageous to contest elections. If he takes that decision, the Shiv Sena will support him," Shiv Sena MP Sanjay Raut said last week.
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