Six non-BJP MLAs among 8 legislators to take oath as Goa ministers along with Parrikar
Over two years after he quit as Chief Minister of Goa to become the Defence Minister, Manohar Parrikar is set to take over the coastal state's mantle again today as the head of a BJP-led government.
Besides Parrikar, eight MLAs will also take oath as Ministers. The swearing-in ceremony will be held at 5 pm at Raj Bhavan.
Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari BJP president Amit Shah, Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh will be among other top BJP leaders who will be present at the occasion.
"Around eight to nine ministers including two each from the Goa Forward Party and the Maharashta Gomantak Party and two independents will be sworn in. Two or three ministers from BJP (including Parrikar) too will take the oath," BJP's Goa unit president Vinay Tendulkar said.
"Among the BJP legislators, (current) deputy CM Francis D'Souza and another legislator whose name will be announced this morning will be sworn in," he said.
Tendulkar, however, added that from BJP only Parrikar and D'Souza might be sworn in. "That possibility cannot be ruled out," he said.
"Three or four ministerial berths would be filled in the cabinet expansion later," Tendulkar said.
Governor Mridula Sinha has invited Parrikar to form the government after he produced letter of support of 21 MLAs, though the BJP finished as the second-largest party behind the Congress, bagging merely 13 seats against 17 of the Congress.
Parrikar was accompanied by GFP leader Vijai Sardesai and MGP leader Sudin Dhavalikar when he met Governor Sinha and staked the claim to form the government.
Meanwhile, the tussle for government formation in Goa reached the Supreme Court on Monday with the state Congress legislative party leader challenging the invitation extended by Sinha. All India Congress Committee (AICC) Secretary Girish Chodankar said that Chief Justice Jagdish Khehar had ordered setting up of a special bench for the hearing, which had been scheduled for today at 10:30 am.