Manohar Parrikar takes oath as Goa chief minister

File photo of Manohar Parrikar. Photograph:( AFP )

WION New Delhi Mar 14, 2017, 06.19 AM (IST)

Manohar Parrikar has been sworn-in as the next chief minister of Goa, taking the oath of office in his native language Konkani.

The swearing-in ceremony took place amid protests outside Raj Bhavan. 

The event was attended by several BJP leaders, including Amit Shah and Laxmikant Parsekar.

This comes hours after India's Supreme Court ordered a floor test in Goa after the Congress moved a petition in the apex court challenging the BJP's bid for government formation in the state.

Supreme Court said the floor test will be held on March 16 as it refused to stay the swearing-in of Manohar Parrikar as the chief minister of the state which is due to take place today evening. 

Union Minister Nitin Gadkari hit back at the Congress saying, "Congress was not able to choose a leader due to their internal tussle and they are blaming us for it."

"There was no horse-trading in Goa. We had a discussion with non-BJP MLAs and they had some conditions, their support was unanimous," the minister added.

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During the hearing, India's highest court asked the Congress why it did not approach the governor of Goa over government formation after the Congress moved a petition challenging the appointment of BJP-led Manohar Parrikar as Goa chief minister.

The Supreme Court bench headed by CJI Khehar observed that numbers should determine single largest party in Goa.

The Congress petition had alleged that established constitutional practices were being violated by the BJP during their bid to form the government in Goa. The Congress also alleged that the BJP was involved in horse-trading to conjure up the numbers in the Goa House. 

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India's highest court asked the Congress if it had the numbers to form the government in Goa.

The BJP needs the support of 21 MLAs in the 40-member House to prove its majority, the party believes it has the support of 22 MLAs which includes the MGP and Independents.

The Congress, which won 17 seats, had on Saturday emerged as the single largest party in the Goa Assembly polls, which threw up a hung verdict as the BJP won 13 seats.

However, Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party(MGP) which had 3 seats in the Goa assembly on Sunday passed a resolution extending support to the BJP, if it formed the government under the leadership of Manohar Parrikar.

The BJP hopes to cobble up the numbers by convincing other parties and Independents to join the coalition and keep the Congress out of power in the coastal state of India. 

Meanwhile, Manohar Parrikar has said he'd comment after he is sworn-in as the chief minister.

But India's finance minister Arun Jaitley, who also received the added portfolio of the defence ministry after Parrikar resigned to become the Goa CM, slammed the Congress for hindering the BJP from forming the government.

In a Facebook post, Jaitley said: "The Congress Party complains a bit too much. It accused the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) of 'stealing' the mandate. It unsuccessfully petitioned before the Supreme Court. It attempted to raise issues at Lok Sabha. What are the facts?"

Jaitley also attributed BJP's decision to forging post-poll alliances as part of democracy, saying: "Obviously in a Hung Assembly (sic) post-poll alliances will be formed."  

(WION)