Utpal Parrikar, the son of former Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar, quit the Bharatiya Janata Party on Friday and announced that he will contest the Assembly elections as an independent candidate, PTI reported.

He said that he will contest the election from the constituency of Panaji.

This came a day after the BJP did not include his name in its list of 34 candidates for the elections. The saffron party has fielded sitting MLA Atanasio Monserrate from the Panaji constituency.

Parrikar said on Friday that he was left with no choice but to contest as an independent candidate. He, however, said that the BJP will “always remain in my heart”.

Parrikar said that he attempted to convince the BJP that he could contest the elections, India Today reported. “Inspite of that, I didn’t get candidature. I had only two options – BJP or going independent,” he added.

The former chief minister’s son said that he is fighting for the values that he believes in. “Let people of Panaji decide,” he said. “I cannot negotiate with my party.”

Parrikar had on Thursday objected to Monserrate’s candidature from Panaji. “Will the party give [the] ticket to a person with criminal antecedents in the constituency represented by late Manohar Parrikar?” he had asked.

Earlier this week, Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Aadmi Party National Convener Arvind Kejriwal had invited him to contest the elections on his party’s ticket. “Goans feel v[ery] sad that BJP has adopted use and throw policy even with Parrikar family,” Kejriwal had said.

Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut had also backed Parrikar’s candidature from Panaji.

Goa will vote in a single phase on February 14, and the results will be announced on March 10.