Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar died on Sunday. He was the first IITian who became the Chief Minister of any state. Parrikar’s simplicity and clarity were complimented by the opposition as well. While being Chief Minister, it was common to see him on scooters on the streets of Goa. In 2001, Parrikar was conferred the prestigious Alumni Award by IIT Bombay.
Manohar Gopalakrishna Parrikar was born on December 13, 1955 in Mapusa, Goa. Parrikar was associated with the RSS in school education only. He graduated in Metallurgical Engineering from IIT Bombay in 1978. After this, he became the union driver of Mapusa at the age of 26. In 1988, joined the BJP. During this period he also became a major part of the Ram Janmabhoomi movement.
Despite being the Chief Minister of Goa, Parrikar used to go to the assembly on a scooter. Even during the defense minister, he used to travel only in the economy classes in the plane. Parrikar’s image was the country’s immaculate leader. His name did not come in any scam. Because of this image, he was involved in the good list of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. His simplicity was such that he used to come to the big event in the flip flops and half shirts.
Parrikar said during an interview in 2013 that the Gujarat riots were a scar on Modi’s career. He had said that if he was the chief minister, he would make sure that such an incident would not occur. However, Parrikar also said that Modi was not individually involved and he got a clean chit in the investigation. However, Narendra Modi was also convinced of Parrikar’s administrative and organizational ability. For this reason, the Prime Minister had entrusted Parrikar with the responsibility of the Ministry of Defense in his Cabinet in 2014. They remain in the post until 2017. Lakshmikant Parsekar was made CM of Goa after Parrikar became Defense Minister in 2014.
In 2017 assembly elections were held in Goa. Parrikar was involved in the Union Cabinet during this period. The BJP did not get a majority in the assembly elections. Congress was the largest party in the state. Parrikar had to return to the politics of the state from the politics of the center in order to regain the party again. He managed to get the BJP in power with only 14 seats in the state with 40 assembly seats.
Parrikar had pancreatic cancer. Since last year, he was undergoing treatment in Goa, Mumbai, America and Delhi AIIMS. Even after this, he participated in this budget session and presented the budget on January 30. The next day he went to Delhi AIIMS for treatment and returned to Goa on February 5. In the last few days whenever he was planning a scheme or in public show, he was equipped with medical equipments. The nasogastric tube was on his face.
Presenting the budget this year in Goa Assembly, Manohar Parrikar had said, “I will serve Goa with honesty, integrity, and dedication till the last breath. There is passion and very high and I am fully conscious.”
Manohar Parrikar became Chief Minister for the first time on October 24, 2000. His government lasted until February 27, 2002. Second time from 2002 to 2005, for the third time from March 2012 to November 8, 2014, for the fourth time since 2017, he took over the post of chief minister of Goa.
Parrikar’s wife Medha passed away in 2001 from cancer. Parrikar’s two sons, Utpal and Abhijeet. Utpal studied engineering from the Michigan State University of America. Abhijeet is businessmen.