Goa Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar on Thursday claimed he felt “lonely” during his stint as Defence Minister as in Delhi, “one cannot figure out who is an arms dealer or an agent”.
Parrikar also said that he did not “run away” from Delhi, but called his return to his home state as a fortuitous development.
About his time in Delhi, Parrikar said, that he felt lonely in the national capital and could not make friends because of the limitations which the job of a Defence Minister comes with.
“…the ministry was such that I could not create a friends circle. Because one cannot figure out who is an arms dealer and who is an agent. That is why staying away was better. Therefore I felt alone, by myself,” Parrikar said at a media award function here.
Parrikar was inducted as Defence Minister in the Prime Minister Narendra Modi government in November 2014, but was rushed back to state politics to head a BJP-led coalition government earlier this year.
He also said that Delhi’s air pollution took a toll on his health, which had begun to recover after his return to Goa.
“According to me, it was extremely polluted atmosphere. The air quality is so poor, that it has to impact your health. People used to tell me take care of my health, the number of people telling me this, has gone down now. In the last five-six months, my health has improved,” Parrikar said.
“To speak the truth, it did impact my health. People wear woollens there. I am not used to wear woollens, I used to step out without them. Everyone used to say, you will have problems, but I could not wear a thick coat,” he also said.
Asked if he eventually “ran away” from the national capital, Parrikar said: “I didn’t run away. As I told you, I got an opportunity to come back to Goa because, those (MLAs) who were elected from smaller parties here, told (Union Minister Nitin) Gadkari that we will sign (letter of support) if Parrikar comes here”.