Manohar Parrikar is our leader, says Goa BJP amid talks of leadership change
The latest statement has only added to the intrigue surrounding who will succeed ailing Manohar Parrikar who had earlier expressed his inability to discharge his duties as chief minister.Updated: Oct 19, 2018 23:15 IST
The conundrum over the leadership change in Goa BJP continued, with a minister on Friday saying that ailing chief minister Manohar Parrikar would continue to be “our leader”, a day after an alliance partner, who met chief Amit Shah, said that they were considering alternatives “seriously”.
“Our leader is Manohar Parrikar Who told you we are seeking other leadership? Our leader is Manohar Parrikar,” Goa power minister Nilsh Cabral asked, saying talk of alternative leadership was off the mark.
On Thursday afternoon, after a meeting with Shah, chief of alliance partner Goa Forward Party (GFP), Vijai Sardesai had said that the BJP was “seriously considering the leadership issue”.
“BJP leadership is seriously looking into the leadership issue. There are some names that are being discussed, including that of the speaker of the Goa Assembly (Pramod Sawant), Vishwajit Rane (health minister), party president (Vinay Tendulkar),” Sardesai had said.
Cabral distanced himself from Sardesai’s comments. “Vijai Sardesai is not in the BJP. What others are saying I will not pay attention to. Our leader is Manohar Parrikar. It is a statement in his (Sardesai) personal interest. I am speaking for the BJP and BJP has a leader,” he asserted.
The latest statement has only added to the intrigue surrounding who will succeed ailing Parrikar who had earlier expressed his inability to discharge his duties as chief minister.
While the Goa Forward Party appeared agreeable to a leadership change, the other alliance partner the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) was against replacing Parrikar, although its leader Sudin Dhavalikar said a redistribution of portfolios could be done.
“I have told them (BJP’s central leadership) that they should avoid changing the leader as Parrikar is still there. They should instead focus on redistributing the portfolios,” Dhavalikar said.
He said he wants the BJP to respect the wishes and ambitions of allies, hinting that he is opposed to the leadership being handed to a leader besides himself.
The BJP is also facing opposition from within the party with regard to handing over the reins to current frontrunner health minister Vishwajit Rane, who until one and a half years ago was a Congress member.
On Friday, former chief minister Laxmikant Parsekar held discussions with his supporters over reconsidering his three-decade old association with the BJP.
Parsekar has led the charge against the recent upheaval in the BJP.
“BJP is a cadre-based party. If you give one constituency after another to Congress MLAs, then why do you need an organisation. You cannot claim to be a cadre-based party then,” Parsekar said.
State BJP president Vinay Tendulkar, however, offered no fresh comment against Parsekar’s outburst.