By Rupesh Samant
Vasco, Jul 11, 2019: The final rites on Goa’s former minister Wilfred Misquita, who was born a Catholic, were performed in the Hindu way.
The mortal remains of Misquita were cremated in Hindu crematorium at the port town of Vasco July 10. “That was his last wish. He always wanted the final rites to be conducted through Hindu rituals,” a family member told reporters.
Misquita, 70, died on July 8 in a Mumbai hospital after a brief illness.
Before bringing the body to the crematorium, it was taken to the church in Vasco where Mass was offered for the departed soul.
His son and daughter lit the funeral pyre as several hundred people, including Catholic priests, watched.
Born at Divar in north Goa district on April 14, 1949, Misquita graduated from the Goa Medical College in 1970s. He later specialized in medicine from a college in Mumbai before taking the plunge into politics.
During his decades-long political career, Misquita had a stint in various parties in the coastal state. He was the founder vice president of the then ruling Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (youth wing) in 1974.
He served as cabinet minister in the late 1990s in the then Congress-led state government and held various portfolios like revenue, environment, sports and youth affairs, power, law and judiciary and legislative affairs.
He was the leader of the Goa BJP since 2007 and served as the party’s vice president and spokesman. He was also former chairman of the state forest corporation.