Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar has been asked by Goa Congress secretary Girish Chodankar to call off his upcoming birthday celebrations and contribute the funds to the Tamil Nadu flood relief instead. The former CM of Goa will be celebrating his birthday on December 13th.
“Time and again Parrikar has said he was against such celebrations and now he is getting himself felicitated by spending nearly Rs 20 crore. People are suffering without food and basic needs in Chennai. How can Parrikar, being a Central minister, endorse such an expensive celebration?” Indian Express quoted Girish Chodankar, as saying.
“There have been over 900 ceasefire violations, terror attacks taking lives of Army personnel, police and the civilians. Closure of mines has brought suffering for people with loss of employment in the state. What does Parrikar think he truly deserves the honour for?” Chodankar added.
Responding to Chodankar’s charges, Sanquelim MLA and BJP leader Pramod Sawant said, “He (Parrikar) has done so many development works for the state that no Congress CM or other leaders can even come close to. This is a ‘gaurav’ ceremony in respect for all his contribution,” Sawant said.
“It is a voluntarily organised programme with no help taken from the government. From 40 constituencies, about 50,000 people will participate in the ceremony,” he said while defending the allegations of misuse of government’s money.
The BJP MLA, however, remained turned down the question over the total expenditure on the celebrations, saying “they were bare minimum”.