Ireland PM Varadkar arrives in Goa to celebrate New Year


Panaji: Ireland Prime Minister Leo Varadkar, who has his roots in India, arrived on Monday in Goa where he would ring in the New Year, an official said.

Varadkar, who is currently on a private visit to India, would be staying at a plush resort in North Goa district, a senior police official said.

Security around the resort has been beefed up,he said.

“Prime Minister Varadkar’s visit is entirely private.

There are no official functions planned during his visit. He would be in Goa till January 1 alongwith his family,” he said.

He will take a flight from the Dabolim Airport here on January 1 afternoon to return to his country, the official added.

On Sunday, Varadkar along with his family members visited his ancestral village Varad in the coastal Sindhudurg district of Maharashtra.

It was his first visit to the village, said Varadkar, who became prime minister ofIreland in June 2017.

His father Ashok Varadkar, a doctor, moved to the United Kingdom in the 1960s.

The visit was a “special moment” as three generations of his family gathered at Varad, theIreland prime minister said after the villagers felicitated him.

He also visited a temple of the village deity.

During an interaction with villagers, he said, “This is my fifth visit to India but first to Varad village where my grandfather and father have been brought up. It is a privilege and honour for me to visit this place.”

The Ireland PM also said he knows a few words of Marathi, his father’s language, but not enough for interaction.(PTI)