BJP’s Manohar Parrikar on Tuesday took oath as Chief Minister of Goa for the second time in five years along with nine other MLAs at the Raj Bhavan. Addressing a press conference after being sworn in, Parrikar said: “My Hindi is improved after going to Delhi. You might be wondering how I managed the magic figure. Everyone who signed the letter had only one condition – asking Modi to relieve me from Delhi to help form a government in Goa. I have the support from Sudin and Vijai for Goa’s development and that speciality called “goankarponn”. I am grateful. Jis taraf court ne congress ne fatkara hain, agar majority hain toh kisne rokha.
Attacking the Congress, Parrikar added: “In ten years they have 12 CMs. No one wants to support them as everyone knows there is infighting. They proved it again today. I am asked again, will you prove majority. We had 21 on day one. 22 now came late. Congress came in a bus. The reason is they are scared if they come in car, they are scared some cars might disappear. They packed 17 in a bus. We have MGP, Goa Forward and two and a half Independents. More than 55 per cent Goans are thus represented. Thus, we have a post-election coalition. This is adequate proof for floor of the House. We will prove it. Let everyone be very clear – 365 x 5 years.”
On distribution of portfolios, he said: “We will prove our majority first. Other procedures can follow later. Portfolios only distributed after proving majority on the floor. The first common minimum programme was to come together.”
Senior party leaders Amit Shah and Union Minister Nitin Gadkari were in attendance for the ceremony. Former chief minister Lakshmikant Parsekar was also present at the event. Goa Governor Mridula Sinha administered the oath to the MLAs. Goa Forward party leaders – Prabhakar Timble (who resigned as President), General Secretary Mohandas Lolayekar, and spokesman Prashant Naik boycotted the ceremony.
Parrikar’s cabinet comprises of two BJP MLAs, three MLAs of Goa Forward Party, two from MGP and two independents. A huge contingent of party members gathered in Dona Paula, Panjim to welcome the leaders. A section of Goans were also seen protesting outside the venue against the BJP forming the government.
Earlier today, the Supreme Court, hearing a petition against the BJP being invited to form government in Goa, asked Parrikar to prove his majority in the assembly on Thursday. However, BJP Goa president Vinay Tendulkar said the party is prepared to take the floor test tomorrow and will convey the same to the Governor. The Congress had earlier accused the BJP of using “money power” to form the government in Goa. Congress MLA and former state chief minister Digambar Kamat expressed confidence in the party proving its majority. “We want a floor test and we will prove majority,” he said. The Congress Legislature Party met the Governor at 1.30 pm after she refused to meet them this morning, urging that the swearing-in ceremony be postponed.