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Parsekar Goa's new CM; BJP ignores call for a Christian on the post
Saturday November 8, 2014 3:54 PM, & Agencies

Laxmikant Parsekar, presently Goa's health minister, will be the state's new chief minister, party sources said Saturday.

His name was formally proposed by outgoing chief minister Manohar Parrikar and seconded by Deputy Chief Minister Francis D'Souza at the second meeting of party MLAs Saturday. He will be the state's 11th chief minister.

Parsekar's candidature has also been endorsed by the highest decision-making body of the BJP, the parliamentary board, sources said.

He will take the place of now former chief minister Manohar Parrikar who resigned from office after his elevation to the union cabinet, possibly as defence minister.

While Parrikar will be sworn into the union cabinet Sunday afternoon, Parsekar will be sworn in at 4 p.m. Saturday along with a select lot of ministers, including that of alliance partner Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party and at least one independent.

The BJP has ignored the demand by its Christian legislators to elevate Deputy Chief Minister Francis D'Souza. While demanding to make a Christian as Chief Minister of Goa, the MLAs had said the move will help BJP build-up an image. The BJP is considered as anti-minorities.

"It will send a great message to the rest of the country that the BJP has a minority chief minister, especially with another round of state elections around the corner," BJP legislator from Calangute, Michael Lobo, told the media.

The Bharatiya Janata Party "will be able to erase the communal tag once and for all", Lobo said. Lobo is rooting for Deputy Chief Minister Francis D'Souza for the chief ministerial position.

Lobo was one of the 20 BJP legislators who met formally at the state assembly where Parrikar told them about his impending departure.

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