Former Congress’ Mandrem MLA Dayanand Sopte, who joined the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) earlier this week, on Sunday announced that the saffron party has promised and guaranteed him a Cabinet berth next month and until then he has been assured of Goa Tourism Development Corporation (GTDC) chairmanship, reports The Herald.
The BJP in Goa is likely to have a Cabinet rejig after Diwali and portfolios are expected to be reallocated, sources said.
Addressing around 500 supporters at a meeting in Mandrem constituency, Sopte said that BJP has assured him of getting support from former MLA Laxmikant Parsekar and the alliance partners- MGP and Goa Forward Party.
“They promised me that they would convince Parsekar to support me so that we could work together,” Sopte is reported to have told his supporters.
“I joined BJP only for development of the constituency and to ensure jobs to my people,” he said.
He said that during his meeting with BJP state leaders and Amit Shah he demanded jobs for the people, development, ministry and support from BJP workers and Parsekar.
“The Party leadership has promised me a ministry next month and till then I will be appointed as GTDC Chairman,” he said.
Former Goa CM Parsekar has already expressed his anguish over the party’s decision to induct his arch rival Sopte and has announced to work against Sopte in the coming by-election.
Meanwhile, Sopte said that despite being in the Congress he had a cordial relationship with Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar and BJP Ministers and MLAs.
“That is the reason that irrespective of the fact that I was in Opposition, Government gave Rs 32 crore to my constituency for developmental works in 18 months,” Sopte said.
Lashing out at the Congress, Sopte said that despite emerging as single largest party Congress failed to form Government only because they could not finalise their leader.
“After that, we got three different opportunities to form government but even after that we failed. Only because there was more than one leader,” he said.
Sopte recalled how the then Congress MLA and current BJP Minister Vishwajit Rane had asked him to quit the party along with him soon after Assembly election results in 2017. “But then, I did not wanted to betray the people, who had voted for me,” he said.