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‘How’s the josh?’: Goa CM Parrikar’s first words to BJP workers at bridge function

The chief minister was speaking at the inaugural of a Rs 850-crore signature bridge in the capital city of Panaji that was inaugurated by Union road transport and highways minister Nitin Gadkari

india Updated: Jan 28, 2019 08:23 IST
Gerard de Souza
Gerard de Souza
Hindustan Times, Panaji
Manohar Parrikar,Bridge inauguration Panaji,Nitin Gadkari
Ailing Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar at the state secretariat in Panaji at the beginning of 2019 (File Photo) (PTI)

“How is the josh?” Goa chief minister Manohar Parrikar’s first public words to a large gathering of BJP supporters since his debilitating pancreatic ailment were greeted with rousing cheers as he asked them to maintain a positive frame of mind.

“We have to be positive. Be positive. I am happy that within five years, the bridge was completed . here is opposition to everything, this mentality has developed. Goans should be positive now. This is my message today,” he said on Sunday .at the inaugural of a Rs 850-crore signature bridge in the capital city of Panaji by Union road transport and highways minister Nitin Gadkari.

The 5.1 kilometres long bridge, named ‘Atal Setu’ in honour of late former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, will be thrown open for traffic over the next couple of days while the engineers rush to complete finishing touches. The bridge will facilitate traffic coming into Goa from the north towards Bengaluru in the east and Mangaluru in the south.

Parrikar has been confined to his home save for sporadic visits to his office at the secretariat since his discharge from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in mid-October last year.

The opposition Congress has meanwhile termed the bridge as ‘lipstick development’.

“This is lipstick development. Just how a person puts lipstick to dazzle, that’s how this bridge is. The government has neglected priority needs. Without giving the state its primary needs they are giving a big bridge. They have stopped social welfare schemes saying they have no money but they built this bridge. People do not get running water at home. The government’s priority is corruption, not development,” state Congress president Girish Chodankar said.

First Published: Jan 27, 2019 23:47 IST