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Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar on Thursday returned from the US two days ahead of schedule, and headed for his private residence. The Chief Minister arrived at the Dabolim International Airport around 5.30 p.m. and did not speak to the media gathered outside. Parrikar, who is being treated abroad for advanced pancreatic cancer, had gone to the US on August 30, the third time in six months.
Parrikar's early return coincides with murmurs about the possibility of some Congress MLAs joining the ruling party ranks. The Congress has however dismissed media reports to this effect and blamed the Bharatiya Janata Party's 'fake news factory'.
It all started in mid-February this month when he was rumoured to be suffering from IV stage of pancreatic cancer. But since there were no clear reports by the minister himself in the same month or even till April, opposition had asked him to come out clean on his health condition.
We have sympathies for Parrikar, but the Chief Minister should be transparent about his illness. He should be true to the people of Goa who have elected him, state Congress president Shantaram Naik had then said.
Parrikar's ill health and absence from Goa has been a matter of discussion since the past few months. His absence has attracted flak from the opposition that claims that governance has come to a standstill in the coastal state. The Congress in the state has appealed to Goa Governor Mridula Sinha to dismiss the BJP-led coalition government in the coastal state due to the severe health crisis that has hit the state cabinet. The matter came to the fore after 4 out of 12 cabinet ministers including Parrikar, have been suffering from serious ailments, which has forced them to abstain from discharging their official duty to full capacity. All of this has led to utter chaos and confusion in the state.
(with inputs from IANS)
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