Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar while addressing BJP workers in Panaji yesterday had accused Adv. Aires Rodrigues of attempting to blackmail him.
Asserting that he was not born in an indigent family, Adv. Aires Rodrigues has clarified that over the years he had always spent his own time and money raising public issues. “Let Parrikar give details of even a single paisa that I may have illegally accepted and also show where it has been deposited as claimed by him”, demanded Adv. Rodrigues.
Advising Manohar Parrikar to maintain the dignity and decorum of the high constitutional post he is holding, Adv. Rodrigues has stated that being Chief Minister he could not stoop to a street fighter’s level with such cheap gimmicks.
Claiming that if the swearing in ceremony was held at Raj Bhavan the cost would have been a few thousands only, Adv. Rodrigues has reiterated that the 11 lakhs spent on the March 9th function was a criminal waste of public funds that in public interest would be raised before the Goa Lokayukta. Adv. Rodrigues has opined that if Parrikar was keen on holding that extravaganza, its cost should have been borne by his party and should not have burdened the tax payer.
Stating that he had always — and selflessly — taken every issue raised to a logical end, Adv. Rodrigues said that it was Manohar Parrikar who has to explain to the people of Goa about his very suspicious U-turn on Casinos, illegal mining and his hoax of zero tolerance to corruption.
Recalling that he had been in public life fighting against corruption and injustice for almost four decades now, much before Manohar Parrikar had even entered politics, Adv. Rodrigues has claimed that he has never shied away from raising issues against successive governments, without fear or favour, and that the present Chief Minister too should respect this fundamental right of every citizen.
Adv. Rodrigues wondered whether Chief Minister’s ego was hurt after the fiasco of Alina Saldanha’s proposed cabinet induction, and made it clear that he had raised the issue solely in public interest as Manohar Parrikar was committing a political impropriety.
He also recalled that way back in 2001, the then Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar had appointed him as Vice- Chairman of the NRI facilitation Centre, which position he had declined to accept as he did not want to be indebted to any politician and compromise his freedom to speak out against corruption and nepotism.
Drawing Manohar Parrikar’s attention that we are in a democracy and not an autocracy, Adv. Rodrigues has stated that the Chief Minister’s attempt to stifle the voice of opposition and constructive criticism was deplorable.
Having admitted that he had been a BJP fan for the last many years, because of his friend Mr. Shripad Naik, Adv. Rodrigues confessed that he had realized his mistake, based on the first hand experience at the 2011 CCP elections that the party was extremely communal and that Mr. Manohar Parrikar was a person that could not be trusted.
Alleging that Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar was trying to fool Goans with promises that could never be fulfilled, Adv. Rodrigues has expressed confidence that the people of Goa would be witness and true judges of this government’s communal and fascist hidden agenda.