Antonio Costa, who traces his paternal roots to Goa, and the leader of Portugal's Socialist Party was named Prime Minister and tasked with forming a government after weeks of political instability caused by an inconclusive election last month.
The 54-year-old leader's appointment comes after Costa’s alliance with Communist, Green and Left Bloc parties toppled an 11-day-old conservative minority government in a dramatic parliamentary vote – the shortest administration in Portuguese history.
We list out five things that you probably didn't know about him:
- Born in Lisbon in 1961, Antonio Luis Santos da Costa is of Goan origin. His father, Orlando da Costa, a well-known novelist who also wrote essays on Rabindranath Tagore, was born in Mozambique, but spent most of his youth in Goa where his own father, Luis Afonso Maria da Costa, was born and brought up. The latter was a descendant of reputed Hindu families from the Gaud Saraswat Brahmin community that converted to Catholicism during the Portuguese colonial era.
- In 1991, Costa became member of the Portuguese parliament, presenting as many as 20 law projects.
- He was secretary of state from 1995 to 1997 and minister of parliamentary affairs (1997-99); organised Expo 98 which turned out to be a great success.
- From June 2004 to March 2005, he was a member of the European parliament and was also elected as one of its 14 vice-presidents. In 2007, he was elected mayor of Lisbon for the third time.
- Since 2008, Costa has participated every Thursday in Quadratura do Circulo, a TV show where he debates current affairs with two right-wing politicians.
Read Outlook's full story here: Then Came A Gandhi