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Pramod Sawant Sworn in as New Chief Minister of Goa

goa CM

The Bharatiya Janata Party’s Pramod Sawant took oath as the Chief Minister of Goa at 2 am today at Raj Bhawan. The names of Deputy Chief Ministers are expected to be declared by the end of the day.

45-year-old Sawant takes over from ex- Defence Minister and four-time Goa Chief Minister, Late Manohar Parrikar, who was cremated at the Miramar beach on 18th March 2019.

Sawant’s swearing-in ceremony was originally scheduled to be held at 11pm yesterday (18th March) but it was pushed back, with the partners seeking to extract their pound of flesh.

The new government includes two Deputy Chief Ministers - chief of Goa Forward Party, Vijai Sardesai and MLA, Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party, Sudin Dhavalikar, from the 2 small parties supporting BJP in the coastal state.

Nine other ministers of the state cabinet were also sworn in at the late-night ceremony along with the Chief Minister and his two deputies.  The nine other ministers include Manohar Azgaonkar, Govind Gaude, Vinod Palienkar, Rohan Khaunte, Jayesh Salgaonkar, Vishwajit Rane, Milind Naik, Mauvin Godinho and Nilesh Cabral.

In addition, Michael Lobo, who is presently the deputy speaker, will be the speaker till a new one is selected.

Pramod Sawant and Union Minister, Nitin Gadkari, went to stake claim to form the new government after midnight as power-sharing discussions with the alliance partners continued till late.

parrikar

The new Chief Minister said the party had given him a big responsibility and gave all credit to Manohar Parrikar for his rise. He said “Whatever I am today is all because of Manohar Parrikar. It was he who brought me to into politics. I became the Speaker and now the CM, due to him”.

Sawant was selected as leader of the BJP legislature party at a meeting held in Panaji, just minutes after Parrikar was paid state funeral with full military honours. BJP president, Amit Shah and Nitin Gadkari met with the legislators before the formal resolution was passed.

Meanwhile, Goa Congress criticized Governor Mridula Sinha for giving the BJP an opportunity to form the government calling her an "agent of the BJP". Sunil Kawthankar of Congress said, "We strongly condemn undemocratic action of Mridula Sinha for not letting our single largest party to form the government and allowing the BJP to continue horse trading despite the party didn’t have adequate numbers to form the government". Kawthankar further said that the day will be remembered as "darkest day in Indian democracy”.

It must be noted that Manohar Parrikar was heading a coalition government that comprised of the BJP, 3 MLAs each of the Goa Forward Party (GFP), the MGP and 3 independents.



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