Senior BJP leader and former chief minister Laxmikant Parsekar on Thursday demanded that the state BJP unit must be overhauled and reformulated and unit president Vinay Tendulkar should resign in the interest of the party.
Talking to media persons after attending a crucial meeting of rebellious senior BJP leaders who have been on warpath with other senior party functionaries in the state, Parsekar said, “The present setup of the Goa BJP unit must be overhauled and the unit president should vacate the post in the interest of the BJP… I don’t have any personal grievances against anybody. We are not against the party but are speaking in the interest of the party.”
The meeting, which was held at the residence of Mapusa MLA and BJP veteran Francis D’Souza on Thursday evening, lasted for two hours. The meeting was attended by Parsekar, former minister Dayanand Mandrekar, former BJP legislators Anant Shet and Mahadev Naik, besides D’Souza.
The state BJP unit has been in turmoil as the party veterans have crossed swords with the functionaries over several issues especially the recent induction of two former Congress leaders Subhash Shirodkar and Dayanand Sopte into the BJP.
Consequently the fractious BJP veterans held the meeting in an attempt to rattle the party.
“We are of the view that the organisational setup must be changed. For two hours, we deliberated on everything, including the party leadership. We must admit that our workers across the state are anguished. Many of them have approached us… Now the party high command must act,” Parsekar said while talking to the media persons outside D’Souza’s residence.
Parsekar held his cards close to his chest when asked as what would they do if the party high command refrains from taking any step.
Replying to a question on Tendulkar, the former chief minister said the workers are of the strong view that Tendulkar has shown his inefficiency.
“When two ministers were dropped the state BJP chief said that he was not party to the decision. When two former Congress MLAs were inducted into the BJP Tendulkar said the decision was taken by the national BJP president… If he (Tendulkar) cannot take his own decisions then he is unfit to occupy the post,” Parsekar explained.
Parsekar also said that more similar meetings will be held in future as things cannot be resolved by holding only one meeting.
He admitted that Speaker Pramod Sawant, South Goa MP Narendra Sawaikar and party leader Sanjiv Desai had called on him on Wednesday.
“They waited for hours but we did not get time to interact, as there were many people. I was asked to meet party leaders. But I told them that I won’t able to met them as I am busy,” Parsekar disclosed.
Reiterating his stand over Shirodkar’s induction into the BJP, Naik said, “I have already declared my stand: I will work to defeat the BJP candidate for the Shiroda bypoll.”
Mandrekar said that those who have been criticising the party may have individual issues. But we are an organisation and it is everybody’s responsibility to strengthen the organisation.
When brought to the notice the criticism made by BJP MLAs against their own party, Mandrekar said, “Michael Lobo is the Deputy Speaker. I don’t know how he can criticise the party despite being part of it. We all feel bad about it, but can’t do anything. This has been happening because there is a communication gap. Moreover if such statements are made then immediate action should be taken by the core committee of the BJP.”