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Defence Minister Parrikar travels economy class to Goa

PTI 12 Nov 2014, 22:13:17 PM IST

New Delhi: Leaving aside the official executive jet he is entitled to, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar today flew economy class on a budget airline to his home state Goa on a four-day trip during which he will visit Goa Shipyard, Navy facilities and meet Coast Guard officials.  

Prior to his departure, he was given a detailed briefing by the Indian Coast Guard that last for nearly two hours.  Ministry sources said during the briefing, Parrikar raised a number of queries.

58-year-old Parrikar was the Goa Chief Minister till last week and had resigned from his post to take over as Defence Minister.

Parrikar is entitled to use the Embraer executive jet, which is part of the VVIP squadron maintained by the Indian Air Force.

“This visit is part private and part official. The minister will be visiting the Naval facilities in Goa, the Goa Shipyard and carry forward his meeting with Coast Guard there,” a source said.

Meanwhile, the bureaucracy and the defence personnel in the Ministry see him as a tough task master who has had several intense briefing sessions since yesterday morning.  

For two consecutive days, he has taken a briefing at 8:30 AM, an hour before official working time.  Sources said the new minister has indicated that he would like to come early and work till beyond the official timings.