Manohar Parrikar was the epitome of simplicity and frugal living, wrote Union Minister Nitin Gadkari in a heart-felt obit piece in a national daily on Tuesday. Remembering his friend Manohar, Gadkari wrote that though pancreatic cancer has low survival rate, he and others hoped that Parrikar would be able to pull of the ‘biggest coup’ of his life. Writing in the Indian Express, Gadkari remembered his three-decade long personal bond with Parrikar.
“As I recall my association with Manohar, let me make another important point — in my knowledge never before has a leader from a state as small as Goa enjoyed a pan India acceptance and popularity. The reason is simple: Manohar was your next door CM, the kind of relative or uncle you could identify with or relate to, whether you met him at a government office or the vegetable market,” Gadkari wrote in the Indian Express obit.
He also said that Parrikar’s undefeatable spirit was an inspiration for all those battling cancer.
The first-ever IITian who became an MLA, Parrikar was known for his down to earth ways. While speaking to a regional channel, Vasant Vasant Limaye, his fellow student at the IIT-Bombay said, "There used to be separate groups among students at IIT-B, those fluent in Marathi and those strong in English. But Manohar could deal with students from such diversified background perfectly," he said. Parrikar had earlier promised his wife that he would quit politics, but after her death, he decided to continue with his political life, Limaye recalled.
"At the time of my book release couple of years ago, I had invited him. Later, I learnt that his son was admitted to a hospital so I assumed that he would not come to my event in Pune. But once he was informed that his son was discharged from hospital, Parrikar attended his Assembly session and reached Pune. I was shocked to see him but was thrilled with his commitment," he said.