Winning BJP candidate blames party for supporting Parrikar s son

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Panaji, March 10

 Despite scoring a narrow victory, BJP's Panaji assembly candidate Atanasio Monserrate on Thursday blamed the party's cadre and workers for unofficially supporting former Chief Minister late Manohar Parrikar's son Utpal over him.

Speaking to reports after claiming victory over Utpal Parrikar who contested as an independent candidate, Monserrate said BJP workers also worked against his wife Jennifer who contested the elections from adjoining Taleigao assembly seat, also on a BJP ticket.

"I am telling you, I feel the BJP cadre has not accepted me in the party. I look at it that way. That is the reason. If he (Utpal) could get so many votes, it means the cadre shifted their votes to him. I can say only that the BJP leadership here did not manage to do damage control," Monserrate said, after claiming a victory with 700 odd votes.

The result has not been formally announced by the Election Commission of India yet.

"Secondly, BJP workers also worked against Jennifer. To give you one insight, the president of the BJP women's cell was sitting on the Congress table on the day of elections," he said.

Monserrate and his wife Jennifer joined the BJP as a part of a 10-member breakaway unit of Congress legislators in 2019.

"I never expected this result… The BJP has not accepted me in the party. I joined BJP two years ago, but the BJP cadre has not accepted me in the party. The party did nothing from day one," Monserrate said.

When asked to respond to Monserrate's comments, Chief Minister Pramod Sawant said that he would "analyse them later".

Describing the contest against Monserrate, Utpal Parrikar who made his electoral debut, said that the contest was a "good fight".


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