The Bharatiya Janata Party on Thursday won the trust vote in the Goa Assembly, and Manohar Parrikar will remain chief minister. Twenty-two MLAs, including 13 BJP legislators, supported him.
Parrikar had been sworn in on Tuesday, along with nine other ministers. Earlier this week, Parrikar had resigned as Union Defence Minister to take over Goa, at the request of the state’s regional parties.
The vote comes as a massive blow to the Congress, which had won more seats in the state than the BJP. The Congress has 17 seats, against BJP’s 13, but had not managed to cobble together an alliance to reach the halfway mark.
After the BJP announced it had the numbers to form the government, the Congress had moved the Supreme Court on Monday, challenging Parrikar’s appointment as Goa chief minister. The party had claimed that it should have been invited first to form the government in the state, since it was the single largest party. The court had ordered the floor test, but allowed Parrikar to be sworn in.
After winning the trust vote, Parrikar said claims made by senior Congress leader Digvijay Singh were false. “Right from the beginning they didn’t have the numbers,” he added. He then went on say he wished the Congress scion (Rahul Gandhi) continues to be at the helm of party affairs so that the BJP’s win in the next election is guaranteed.
On being asked who would be his deputy chief minister, Parrikar said, “It is a government of coalition and decision in this regard will be taken by the coalition.”
The BJP has also formed the government in Manipur along with support from regional parties. In the recently-held elections in five states, the BJP has a government in four. The Congress has only won in Punjab, so far.