- Francis D'Souza has been unwell for some time and is in hospital in US
- He said this was reward given to him for 20-year-long loyalty to BJP
- He was heading urban development ministry in the Parrikar government
A legislator in Goa who was dropped by Manohar Parrikar from his government on Monday said he had no hint that he was being removed from his ministry. Francis D'Souza, who has been unwell for some time and is in hospital in the US, is evidently upset and said this was the reward given to him for his 20-year-long loyalty to the BJP.
Mr Parrikar, who himself is undergoing treatment for a pancreatic ailment at Delhi's AIIMS, dropped Mr D'Souza and another minister, Pandurang Madkaikar, from his cabinet.
"This is the reward I am getting for my loyalty to the party for the last 20 years," Mr D'Souza told news agency told PTI on phone. He was heading the urban development ministry and Pandurang Madkaikar was the power minister of Goa.
In swift political developments, two other BJP leaders who are replacing them will take oath of office on Monday evening. Milind Naik was power minister in the previous Laxmikant Parsekar-led cabinet. Nilesh Cabral is a first-time minister.
"I had even spoken to the chief minister last evening but he did not give any hint... When I called him today after coming to know that I was being dropped, the chief minister said it was the party high command's decision," said Mr D'Souza, who has been a a legislator from north Goa's Mapusa constituency for the last two decades.
Mr Madkaikar, who had suffered a brain stroke in June, is being treated in Mumbai.
The changes in the Goa cabinet comes a day after BJP president Amit Shah said that Manohar Parrikar, 62, will continue to be the chief minister but there will be a reshuffle of his ministers.
Goa is facing a leadership crisis with Manohar Parrikar away for treatment. Soon after Mr Paarikar left for Delhi, the opposition Congress staked claim to power.
The Shiv Sena too attacked ally BJP blamed it for being solely responsible for the political crisis. "... it is as if the entire Goa cabinet is in the ICU," the Sena had said in its mouthpiece last week.
(With inputs from PTI)
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