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Manohar Parrikar: The Man who Traversed the Journey from an IIT to Defence Ministry

In the year 1994, Parrikar was elected to the Legislative Assembly of Goa from Panaji constituency. He served as a leader of Opposition from June to November 1999. And then began his journey of being the Chief Minister of Goa from the year 2000. He became the Chief Minister of Goa for the first time in the year 2000, however, his tenure ended in 2002. He was then re-elected as the chief minister for the second time in 2002 itself.

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The nation mourns as the 63-year old chief minister of Goa, Manohar Parrikar, took his last breath on Sunday losing the well spirited battle with cancer. Parrikar was trapped by cancer in his pancreas which gave a tough time to the engineering graduate of Indian Institute of Technology (IIT). The death shocked many, though he was battling one of the life threatening diseases. The Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted expressing his condolence over the death of the man who, reportedly, recommended his name for prime ministerial position before the 2013 Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) parliamentary elections convention in Goa.


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Soon after, national mourning was announced along with 7-day state level mourning in Goa by the chief minister office commencing from Sunday evening. The mortal remains of the former union defence minister was kept in Kala Academy, Panjim for people to pay homage to their beloved Minister between 11am – 4pm while his last journey began at 4pm and he was accorded state honour at his cremation. We found out few inspiring facts about Manohar Parrikar that nation will remember for years and years to come.

Manohar Parrikar, born in a Goud Saraswat Brahmin, business family was always ambitious and determined about serving the nation. As a teenager, he joined Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). Soon after completing his graduation in metallurgical engineering from Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), he resumed his work with the organization.

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At the age of 26, he became the Sanghchalak (Chief of RSS) of Goa’s Mapusa, the place where he was born. He then became a key organizer of the Ram Janmabhoomi Movement. It was in 1980s when Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) thought of establishing itself in Goa and asked RSS to lend some of it’s cadres and this is how Manohar Parrikar joined BJP and entered politics.

In the year 1994, Parrikar was elected to the Legislative Assembly of Goa from Panaji constituency. He served as a leader of Opposition from June to November 1999. And then began his journey of being the Chief Minister of Goa from the year 2000. He became the Chief Minister of Goa for the first time in the year 2000, however, his tenure ended in 2002. He was then re-elected as the chief minister for the second time in 2002 itself. He served as the Chief Minister from the year 2002 to 2005. In the year 2005, his government was then reduced to minority in the Assembly as four BJP Members of Legislative Assembly (MLAs) resigned from the House. Indian National Congress’ Pratap Singh Rane then became the Chief Minister of Goa, replacing Manohar Parrikar.

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In 2007, the Parrikar-led BJP government in Goa was defeated in the state elections by the Congress, led by Digambar Kamat, who was a former BJP leader. Then in the year 2012, the BJP and it’s allies won twenty four seats against Congress, who managed to gain nine seats in the Goa Assembly elections. Following this victory, Manohar Parrikar, yet another time became the Chief Minister of Goa. This tenure lasted from 2012-2014.

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In 2014 General Elections, BJP won both the Lok Sabha seats in Goa, Parrikar then joined the Central Government. Though he was not ready to leave the state politics and move to the centre, the newly elected Prime Minister Narendra Modi persuaded him to do so.

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In November 2014, Manohar Parrikar was chosen as the Minister of Defence replacing Arun Jaitley who was handling an additional office with the office of Finance Ministry. Then in March, 2017, Parrikar sworn in as the Chief Minister of Goa, apparently for the fourth and the last time.

The man known for his honesty and down to earth persona, the real aam aadmi, Manohar Gopalkrishna Prabhu Parrikar is no more now. The BJP is now searching for a Goa dignitary who would be as worthy as Parrikar in serving Goa the way Parrikar did.

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