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Embarrassing to have convicted minister in cabinet: Goa CM
Wednesday April 1, 2015 10:08 PM, IANS

Goa Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar on Wednesday said it was embarrassing to have a convicted minister in his cabinet and hinted that minister Francisco Pacheco could be dropped soon.

Archives and Archaeology Minister Pacheco's conviction in a 2006 assault case was upheld by the Supreme Court on Monday.

Asked at a media briefing at the state secretariat if it was embarrassing to have a convicted minister in his cabinet, Parsekar said: "Obviously. It is but natural."

Pacheco, an MLA from Nuvem, has a string of cases against him related to extortion, assault, bigamy, money laundering, etc.

He was booked in July 2006 for assaulting Kapil Natekar, a junior engineer in Goa's power department, in his own cabin.

Pacheco, who was sworn-in as a minister during a cabinet expansion in November last year, on Wednesday filed a petition in the Supreme Court seeking a review of the judgment by Justice F.M.I. Kaifulla and Justice Shiva Singh.

The chief minister also said the Supreme Court's dignity had to be upheld and that a decision on dropping Pacheco from the cabinet would be taken after meeting the minister personally.

Parsekar said he would keep the "dignity and honour" of the Supreme Court, but because of a promise made to Pacheco that a decision on his future will be taken only after meeting him, he was compelled to wait.

"I also want to keep my word with him. He has said he will come, I will wait for him," Parsekar said.

The chief minister said there was no chance of his sentenced cabinet colleague misusing office, because Pacheco was not in Goa.

Goa's BJP-led coalition government comprises of Pacheco's Goa Vikas Party (GVP), the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) and Independent legislators.

BJP has 21 MLAs in the 40-member Goa legislative assembly, a simple majority, while the other coalition partners - the GVP has two and the MGP has 3.

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