Ailing Parrikar to celebrate Diwali in Goa: BJP MLA

Panaji,  Ailing Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar, who is currently undergoing treatment for advanced pancreatic cancer in a Delhi hospital, will be celebrating Diwali in Goa, BJP MLA Rajesh Patnekar said on Tuesday.

Speaking to IANS on Tuesday, soon after meeting Parrikar at the national capital’s All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), where the former Defence Minister has been admitted since last month, Patnekar, said: “It was very nice to see our Chief Minister after such a long time. He has assured me that he will be celebrating this Diwali (in November) in Goa and he will be arriving in his state soon.”

Interestingly, speaking to reporters last week, Deputy Speaker of Goa Legislative Assembly Michael Lobo, who is also a BJP MLA, had said that the Chief Minister’s health was deteriorating.

“He can hear less, it seems right now, at this stage of staying in AIIMS. We all are praying very hard that he comes out of his sickness. But till today there is no positivity that he is coming out,” he had told reporters on October 5.

The health of Parrikar has been a matter of public concern in Goa for the last eight months, ever since he was diagnosed with advanced pancreatic cancer in February this year.

The former Defence Minister has been in and out of hospitals in Goa, Mumbai, New York and Delhi over the last several months, even as the opposition has demanded his resignation for not being able to effectively head the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led coalition government in the coastal state.

There has been no medical advisory about the Chief Minister’s health either by the Chief Minister’s Office or the state unit of the BJP. The CMO in informal messages has maintained that Parrikar is recovering from a minor pancreatic ailment.