Parrikar flown to AIIMS amid buzz of Goa re­jig

Hindustan Times (Bathinda) - - Nation - Ger­ard de Souza ger­ard.des­ouza@htlive.com

PANAJI: Goa chief min­is­ter Manohar Parrikar was on Satur­day flown to the All In­dia In­sti­tute of Med­i­cal Sciences (AIIMS) in New Delhi for treat­ment of a sus­pected pan­cre­atic ail­ment within days of re­turn­ing from a hos­pi­tal stint in the US, leav­ing in limbo the fu­ture of a coali­tion gov­ern­ment he has glued to­gether.

Amid po­lit­i­cal pos­tur­ing by part­ners and in­de­pen­dents whose sup­port is cru­cial for the Bharatiya Janata Party (Bjp)led gov­ern­ment of Goa, the BJP was bid­ing its time as it sought a way out of the po­lit­i­cal fix it found it­self in, com­pounded by the fact that its se­nior-most leader in the state and a for­mer deputy to Parrikar, Fran­cis D’souza, is also in hos­pi­tal in the US.

The 62-year-old chief min­is­ter spoke to BJP na­tional pres­i­dent Amit Shah on Fri­day evening to up­date the lat­ter about his health con­di­tion, af­ter which a de­ci­sion was taken to shift him to AIIMS, where he was admit­ted on Satur­day af­ter­noon. A team of BJP cen­tral lead­ers is ex­pected in the state on Sun­day.

“For now, we only wish Parrikar a speedy re­cov­ery. The party will take a de­ci­sion at an ap­pro­pri­ate time,” Shah said at a news con­fer­ence in Hy­der­abad when asked if the BJP had de­cided on an al­ter­na­tive leader. Deputy speaker and BJP leg­is­la­tor Michael Lobo said Parrikar was no longer in a po­si­tion to at­tend to of­fi­cial work from the hos­pi­tal bed like he used to ear­lier. “He can­not mon­i­tor any­thing. There is likely to be a change in the next few days; we have to wait and watch,” Lobo said. On Fri­day evening, Parrikar vis­ited his an­ces­tral home for Ganesh Chaturthi cel­e­bra­tions for about 25 min­utes. He is not known to miss the an­nual fes­ti­val and this year only made it on the sec­ond day. A host of rul­ing party mem­bers, min­is­ter and law­mak­ers called on the chief min­is­ter on Fri­day.

Lobo, who called on Parrikar at a pri­vate hos­pi­tal in Can­dolim be­fore his de­par­ture for New Delhi, de­scribed his con­di­tion as “not good.”

Re­ports in­di­cate that Parrikar is not re­spond­ing to med­i­ca­tion and is pro­gres­sively be­com­ing weaker, which led to his be­ing shifted to All In­dia In­sti­tute of Med­i­cal Sciences (AIIMS).

As it faces pres­sure from al­liance part­ners to put an al­ter­na­tive in place in the absence of Parrikar, who has held the coali­tion to­gether since it was formed af­ter the Fe­bru­ary 2017 state elec­tions, the Bhar­tiya Janta Party (BJP) has lim­ited op­tions be­fore it: dis­so­lu­tion of the house to make way for early elec­tions, ap­point­ing Union min­is­ter of state for AYUSH Shri­pad Naik as in­terim CM or hand­ing charge to some­one else in the cab­i­net.

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