Home India News Pacheco seeks anticipatory bail; cabinet replacement likely

Pacheco seeks anticipatory bail; cabinet replacement likely


Panaji : Mickky Pacheco, former Goa tourism minister who was questioned in connection with the suspicious death of his alleged paramour, Tuesday applied for anticipatory bail at a local court. Preparations are also on to induct a new minister in the 12-member cabinet to replace him.

Pacheco, a Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) legislator who already faces charges of bigamy, extortion and assault, went ‘missing’ after Crime Branch officials grilled him for nearly nine hours Friday.

He applied for anticipatory bail at the Margao district and sessions court.

Pacheco has been caught in the whirlwind after his 28-year-old alleged lover Nadia Torrado died May 30 at a Chennai hospital after consuming rat poison.

Women activists and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) demanded a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) or judicial enquiry into the woman’s death.

Pacheco himself demanded a judicial probe into Torrado’s death, calling the police investigation a “witch-hunt” against him.

Meanwhile, preparations are being made to swear-in a new minister.

Sources said a meeting of the respective high commands of the NCP and the Congress had finalised the name of Nilkanth Halarnkar, an NCP legislator from Thivim to replace Pacheco in the Congress-led coalition government.

The present ruling dispensation includes the Congress, the NCP, the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP), one Independent legislator and one unattached legislator.

“Since an NCP minister was dropped, we insisted that an NCP legislator should be inducted. Two cabinet berths for the NCP is part and parcel of the alliance agreement with the Congress,” an NCP functionary said.

While Halarnkar’s name has not been formally announced, Raj Bhavan grounds have been readied for the swearing-in ceremony to be held Tuesday afternoon.

Goa legislative assembly has 18 Congress legislators, 14 BJP, 3 NCP, 2 MGP, two Independents and one unattached legislator belonging to the United Goans Democratic party (UGDP).