Panaji: Utpal, the son of former city MLA and ex-chief minister Manohar Parrikar, on Sunday said that he respects the decision of the Bharatiya Janata Party to field Sidharth Kunkalienkar as its candidate for the May 19 Panaji bypoll and would campaign for him as per party’s direction.
Utpal also thanked Chief Minister Pramod Sawant for ending the impasse, which had delayed the announcement of BJP’s candidate for the Panaji by-election. “The Chief Minister worked hard yesterday to remove this impasse, which had prevented the particular decision,” he added, pointing out, “I also thank Vinay Tendulkar and Satish Dhond for giving us a candidate before end of the deadline for filing of nomination papers.”
Speaking further, Utpal said that whenever a new person wants to join politics to cleanse the system, he has to face hindrances. “My father had faced many obstacles, and so I have,” he noted, maintaining that he, however, respects the party’s decision and would campaign for Sidharth with full force as per party’s direction.
Utpal said that he would also maintain connect with the workers of the BJP. “I will not get disheartened with party’s decision and would proceed forward by following its direction,” he mentioned. “I had no expectations whatsoever (from the party),” Utpal stated while answering to a question, observing that he would also meet his supporters, who wanted him to contest from Panaji and convince them about party’s decision, in turn, ensuring that the BJP candidate wins in Panaji.
“Retention of Panaji seat for the BJP has now become priority for me, as it was a seat previously held by my father for nearly 25 years,” he noted.