Ants’ invasion flusters Parrikar

Panaji, April 30 (IANS) It was an invasion even the seasoned, battle-scarred Manohar Parrikar was not prepared for and could not fend off himself. Exasperated, the Goa chief minister called for ushers to beat off the surprise attack.

It was not the sweetest of times Parrikar faced in the state legislative assembly Tuesday as ants crawled all over his desk and started biting.

Parrikar, who was replying to a discussion on the home ministry’s demands for grants, started shuffling on his feet and stomping on the floor of the house on the side of the treasury benches.

“They are even biting me now,” the otherwise battle-hardened Parrikar said, a few minutes after an army of ants surrounded him and his desk.

“Where did all these ants come from? So many of them,” he exclaimed. Motioning to an usher, he said: “Please, use some spray here.”

Seeing the chief minister’s discomfiture, Speaker Rajendra Arelkar tried to sweet-talk to him and lighten the moment: “They are here because the people are sweet.”

Goa’s assembly is a state-of-the-art legislature with hi-tech facilities like tablet screens on every legislator’s desk. It is making efforts to go paperless soon, according to Arlekar.

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