Former Congress leader, who switched over to BJP, Aleixo Sequeira was inducted in the state cabinet hours after Public Works Department (PWD) Minister Nilesh Cabral resigned on Sunday. The 66-year-old leader was sworn in at Raj Bhavan by Governor P S Sreedharan Pillai in the presence of Chief Minister Pramod Sawant.
Earlier in the day, Cabral, who held portfolios, including PWD, environment and law and judiciary, resigned to make way for the induction of Sequeira. Cabral (51) represents the Curchorem assembly constituency. Sequeira was among the eight MLAs who switched over from the opposition Congress to the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the coastal state last year.
Talking to reporters, Sequeira said when they joined the BJP, the chief minister had made a commitment that there would be development in their constituencies. Sequeira said he was happy to be inducted into the cabinet and would work for the development of the state.
In his resignation letter sent to the chief minister, Cabral said he was stepping down to allow the party to fulfil its “commitments previously made”. Confirming the development, CM Sawant earlier told PTI that Cabral’s resignation had been sent to Governor Pillai for acceptance.
It was the party’s decision to ask Cabral to step down to make way for another MLA in the cabinet, the senior BJP leader said. Legislator Aleixo Sequeira would be inducted into the cabinet at 7 pm on Sunday, the CM had said earlier.
In his resignation letter, Cabral said he was resigning with a “heavy heart” from the esteemed position of minister of the PWD, environment, legislative affairs, and law and judiciary departments. “As requested by you and senior members of the party, due to commitments you have previously made, I tender my resignation from your cabinet of ministers,” his resignation letter said.
Cabral further stated he was immensely grateful for the invaluable opportunities and support provided to him during his tenure in serving the people of this beautiful state. “Please accept this letter as a formal notification of my resignation. I wish you and the administration continued success in your endeavours to lead Goa towards prosperity and progress,” he added.
(With inputs from PTI)