Panaji, March 14: With the Supreme Court on Thursday refusing to stay the oath-taking of BJP's chief ministerial candidate Manohar Parrikar, road has been cleared for the IIT alumni to take oath as CM of Goa for the third time. Parrikar has been credited with consolidating BJP's position in Goa.
Born in Mapusa, Goa Parrikar completed his graduation in metallurgical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay in 1978. He has been a member of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh from a very young age and he is the first IITan to be a CM of an Indian state. IIT Bombay had given him the Distinguished Alumnus award in 2001.
He was elected CM of Goa for the first time in 2000 and for the second time in 2012. In 2001 his government was highly criticised for converting 51 government primary schools in rural Goa to Vidya Bharati, which is the educational wing of the RSS. In 2013 he was criticised for sending a 37-person delegation to travel to European countries to observe their waste management plants and practices. The delegation he sent included deputy CM, MLAs, members of municipal councils and panchayats.
While serving as Goa CM he was handpicked by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to be the defence minister when Modi cabinet was reshuffled for the first time in November 2014. He was picked because of his administrative and organisational skills. He was elected BJP's MP in Rajya Sabha from UP.
Parrikar's term as the defence minister was a period of continuous tension on the India and Pakistan border. The high point of his term as defence minister was the surgical strike carried by the Indian Army in response to the Uri attack.
He negotiated various high-profile acquisitions of weaponry especially some of them had been in limbo for years. The much publicised was the purchase agreement of 36 Dassault Rafale fighter jets. Parrikar during his stint at the centre also brought in warmth in the military relationship between India and the US. US and India signed a pact that allowed both the countries access to military facilities for logistical use.
He had opened up various investigations into alleged scams like AugustaWestland Chopper scam and brought in efficiency and transparency in decision making in the defence ministry.
Parrikar is being sent back to Goa to strengthen BJP in the coastal state. He will be taking oath as the 13th CM of Goa.