Shri Manohar Parrikar, BJP'sposter-boy Chief Minister of Goa, today shuttles between New Delhi and Panjim almost daily, now that he is caught in the political vortex stirred by the Congress party and its pliant Governor, S.C. Jamir. Organiser correspondent Anil Nair talked to him from Mumbai over the phone and his mobile went off-range twice during this interview, as he was evidently crossing cellular phone territories. Goans must be pining for the reinstallation of this charming young CM, for he is also a go-getter??you can'tkeep a good man down?, as the song goes. Excerpts:
What did President A.P.J. Abdul Kalam tell you when you met him to protest against Governor S.C. Jamir'sconduct?
The President was quite gracious and receptive. I am happy that there are still people in this country who look at issues in a considerate and dispassionate manner. He told us that he will look into the complaint against the Governor which we had brought to his notice.
Your petition to the Goa Bench at Bombay High Court is now getting protracted. Are there any second thoughts over the strategy?
No, certainly not. We will take this issue to the court even as we try to mobilise public opinion against a gross injustice. But we have been advised by our lawyers that we should be filing the case in the Supreme Court and not in the Bombay High Court as this is a federal matter. It is not just a matter of Goa state; tomorrow any state government can be dismissed summarily because the Governor wants to curry favour with the Central Government.
Pratap Singh Rane has been given time to prove his majority. Will he be able to muster up the required numbers?
The Congress is going to make an ass of itself very soon. Frankly, I don'tcare, because our majority has already been proved in the floor of the House. If the Governor fails to take cognisance, with deliberate, malafide intentions, then the courts will render justice.
But then if Rane also fails to show majority will there be fresh elections?
Why fresh elections? I have already proved my majority in the House. Now we are seeking justice at the Supreme Court for the Governor to recognise that truth which is as plain as day and to order the installation of my government.
Has this interregnum not put an unwanted stop to all the developmental plans of your government? After all, you have been adjudged the best Chief Minister for your development agenda.
That is the most important aspect for which the people of Goa will not forgive the Congress. We had gained a wonderful pace in development since we came to power and that momentum has been broken just because of all the dirty games the Congress had played to overthrow my government using the Governor.