Panaji, May 14: A weak-looking Manohar Parrikar addressed a convention of BJP booth workers by video in which the Goa Chief Minister said he was looking forward to returning to the state in a few weeks.
Wearing a white shirt with his trademark spectacles dangling from the neck, Parrikar, who is currently taking treatment in the US, said for Prime Minister Narendra Modi to be re-elected to power with a full majority at the Centre in 2019, it was imperative that Goa returns its two BJP MPs to the Lok Sabha.
"For the last two months on account of health and because I had to leave for abroad for treatment, I could not meet you.
"But because the treatment is working well, I hope that in the coming few weeks I will join you with more vigour," Parrikar told the gathering chaired by Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) President Amit Shah.
The Chief Minister is currently undergoing advanced treatment for pancreatic cancer in a New York hospital. He was shifted to the US in March, a month after he was first admitted to a Mumbai hospital for stomach pain, which was diagnosed as pancreatic cancer.
He said 2019 was a significant year in Indian politics and asked the party workers to work in full vigour to ensure a thorough win for the BJP.
"The coming year is very important because of the Lok Sabha election, which is likely to be held in April or May.
"And to ensure that the Modi government returns to power, we need to ensure that we need to win big victories in both Lok Sabha seats in Goa. I, therefore, exhort you all to start preparations right away," Parrikar said.
This is the first time Parrikar has communicated with his party workers via video, the last time being when he was about to leave for the US for treatment in March this year.
Shah in his speech told party workers that he had spoken to Parrikar over telephone, shortly before he arrived at the venue and that he had sounded well and keen to return to state politics.
"I told Parrikar to get well and that the party will hold an even bigger meeting at a bigger venue to welcome him back to Goa."
The BJP President also said that Parrikar was keen to know how the party had fared in Karnataka, which voted on Saturday.
"I said you worry about your health, BJP will form the government will full majority in Karnataka," Shah said.