Utpal Parrikar is welcome to join AAP, says Kejriwal


Panaji: Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) national convener Arvind Kejriwal on Sunday said his party will welcome Utpal Parrikar, son of former Goa chief minister late Manohar Parrikar, if he is willing to join it.

Utpal Parrikar has been lobbying to get the BJP’s ticket for the Panaji Assembly seat, which his father had represented for more than two decades. But the ruling party has given him the cold shoulder.

Assembly elections in Goa are scheduled to be held on February 14. Apart from the BJP and the Congress, the AAP, the Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress (TMC), among others, are in the fray.

Replying to a question asked during his interaction with mediapersons here, Kejriwal said, “I respect Manohar Parrikar. If his son is willing to join AAP, he is most welcome.”

Panaji constituency is currently represented by BJP MLA Atanasio Monserratte. Recently, BJP’s Goa election in-charge Devendra Fadnavis had targeted Utpal Parrikar, saying that just because an aspirant is the son of Manohar Parrikar or any leader, didn’t qualify him for the BJP’s ticket.

Kejriwal has been in Goa since Friday. During his visit, he participated in the party’s door-to-door campaign at St Andre, Shiroda and Cortalim constituencies.

Responding to a question, the Delhi Chief Minister said his that if required, his party will go ahead with forge a post-poll alliance with non-BJP political outfits in Goa.

“But why would someone vote for Congress? People know that if they vote for Congress, once their MLA gets elected, he will go to BJP,” he said.