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Cabral to ‘gift’ Parrikar his Curchorem seat

Panjim: Two-time Curchorem MLA and Chairman of Goa Tourism Development Corporation (GTDC) Nilesh Cabral is likely to quit as MLA to make way for Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar to enter the Assembly.BJP sources confirmed that Cabral had offered to give up his seat for Parrikar when the party’s coalition partners – after a fractured mandate in the election results on March 11 – agreed to team up with BJP to form a government only if Parrikar returns as CM. Parrikar then quit as Defence Minister and took oath as Goa’s CM on March 14.Cabral is expected to put in his papers as MLA by this month-end. “He volunteered to ‘gift’ his seat to Parrikar in the interests of the State and ensure developmental works continue uninterrupted. He will continue to work for the party and the people of his constituency,” a senior party leader told Herald. The Curchorem MLA will also continue as GTDC Chairman.
“The party has tentatively accepted his move. He has not submitted a formal resignation letter as yet.” It is, however, not known whether he will be elected as Rajya Sabha MP even as speculation is rife that any MLA resigning for Parrikar will be sent to the Upper House of Parliament.Among BJP candidates, Cabral had won by the highest margin of 9088 against Goa Suraksha Manch’s Shyam Satardekar. He had garnered 12,830 votes while Satardekar got 3742 votes.The State has five months to conduct by-polls in two seats – Valpoi and Curchorem (once Cabral submits his resignation). The Valpoi seat fell vacant after former Congress MLA Vishwajit Rane resigned as MLA on March 16. He joined BJP on April 6 and was inducted in the cabinet on April 12.The Goa Legislative Assembly currently has 39 MLA and with Cabral’s resignation, the strength will further reduce to 38. Cabral was unavailable for comments. [H]

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