Parsekar backs chargesheeted minister

Panaji, June 15 (IANS) Goa Chief Minister Laxmikant Parsekar on Tuesday backed chargesheeted minister Ramesh Tawadkar, whose resignation is being sought by the opposition, saying the criminal case the minister was involved in was an old and “not a serious one”.

“It is not a recent case. It is six to seven years old. I don’t think it is a serious issue,” Parsekar told reporters here when asked to react to the demands made by the opposition for Tawadkar’s resignation, after the sports minister was chargesheeted by police in 2009 rioting case earlier this month.

Tawadkar, who is the legislator from Poinguinim constituency in south Goa, was booked for barging into the office of a forest range officer in Cotigao Wildlife Sanctuary, around 80 km from Panaji, and forcibly taking away two persons from custody of the forest officials.

The chargesheet was filed at Canacona Judicial Magistrate’s court under sections 143, 147, 451, 353, 224 and 225 read with section 149 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).

Refusing to resign, Tawadkar said that it was his “duty as a public servant” to intervene when a range forest officer was allegedly beating up locals in his custody.

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