"The debate on the expenditure by five legislators who visited Brazil should end now as their trip was personal," Parrikar told the state Legislative Assembly. "They will pay the money, so it now becomes a private trip. The issue should not be discussed further," he said.
The state, which had booked the tickets for the legislators before the controversy erupted, would have lost the money if there was cancellation of tickets, Parrikar told the House. "The money is not spent by government. We just invested for them," he said. The Brazil visit of the six MLAs, including ministers Ramesh Tawadkar (sports), Avertano Furtado (fisheries) and Milind Naik (power), sparked a controversy after the state sports department sanctioned Rs 89 lakh for the tour.
The state government had later withdrawn its consent for the trip, which was organised by state sports department, and labelled it as a study tour regarding construction of infrastructure of national games.
Parrikar had recently told the House that all the foreign tours would undergo pre-audit before they are allowed. The state government is also formulating guidelines on the foreign trips.