The first NRI minister...

| 29 June 2002 22:34 IST

'Loha lohe ko kataa hai' is the new slogan of Indian politics. The people of Benaulim, a coastal constituency in South Goa housing series of five star hotels, were eagerly waiting for a political 'avataar' to take birth, to defeat one-time smuggler and strongman Churchill Alemao.

And the 'avataar' arrived in Benaulim, to finish the supremacy of Alemaos, the name in football publicly but having been alleged for all sorts of goondagiri, extortion and real estate deals. Thy name is Mickky Pacheco.

The 36-year old US-based fashion designer made the strongest man in the state bite dust, spreading a wave of shock throughout the state. Perhaps he is the first NRI getting elected from Goa and holding ministerial position today.

Born in a village of Betalbatim, near the famous Colva beach, Mickky was running his small fashion business in Margao till 1980, at the age of 14 years. He then shifted to Europe and then the US, becoming the US citizen formally in 1989.

In 10 years, he became a powerful businessman in the New York, running six different firms there, in the field of fashion, real estate, travel and tours as well as recruitment.

"My villagers forced me to come back and contest against Churchill, whom I have been financing right from the beginning", claims Mickky, one of the young businessmen politicians that have entered the Goa Assembly.

To counter Churchill, he has preferred the same tourism and sports portfolios the strongman was holding otherwise during the Congress regime.

He is the Indian citizen now since '99, but compelled to travel down to the US time and again. Goa will now have a tourism minister, who will be frequently on a tour…

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