Strategically seated behind a stanchion barrier, Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar on Monday addressed his first formal press conference in months, on his return from the US, where he was undergoing advanced treatment for pancreatic cancer.
Wearing his trademark half-sleeved shirt, Parrikar, during the briefing at the State Secretariat, also explained the protocol he had followed to conduct government business during his stay in the US from March to June 15, when he returned to Goa.
“If you have got cough and cold, stay away from me. This is just to prevent infection,” he told reporters first up as he entered the conference room at the State Secretariat. He also instructed his entourage that the stanchion barriers, which separated him from the media contingent, be taken off for subsequent media briefings.
Parrikar said that barring 10-15 days, during his absence, he was in touch with state officials as far as decision-making processes was concerned.
“Every decision was reported to me on email and I would approve from there. My decisions, as per rule was informed to the secretary. Therefore, I have known what has happened in detail,” he said.
Parrikar also said, that he had even responded to some journalists, reacting to news stories published by them.
“I have replied to some articles by email. I was sending the emails,” he said, to underline the fact that he was writing emails himself.
The Congress in a complaint to the Goa Police Crime Branch, had alleged that the Chief Minister’s email address was being misused by unknown persons in Goa, during Parrikar’s absence from Goa.