Panaji, Jan 21 (PTI) Former Goa chief minister and senior BJP leader Laxmikant Parsekar Monday hinted that he could contest the upcoming Mandrem Assembly bypoll as an Independent candidate if his party refused to give him a ticket.

Mandrem and Shiroda bypolls were necessitated after Dayanand Sopte and Subhash Shirodkar resigned from the Goa Assembly and joined the ruling BJP in October last year.

“I have been traditionally contesting from this constituency. Party workers want me to contest the bypoll.

They feel if the BJP does not give me a ticket, then I should stand as an Independent,” Parsekar told PTI.

Parsekar said he had met BJP state general secretary Satish Dhond and asked him to carry out a survey to check the party’s chances of winning Mandrem seat.

Without naming Sopte, the former CM said local party workers had not accepted the “new person”.

Incidentally, Sopte, then with the Congress, had defeated Parsekar in the 2017 Assembly polls.

When contacted, Goa BJP chief Vinay Tendulkar said the process to select a party candidate for Mandrem and Shiroda constituencies had not yet started.

This is published unedited from the PTI feed.