NEWS / GOA / SAWANT
PANAJI: Pramod Sawant, outgoing Speaker and a protégé of deceased Manohar Parrikar, is the new chief minister of Goa, The BJP took the decision and also bought peace with its alliance partners in the state by giving two deputy CM posts to them. The 46-year-old Sawant is an Ayurveda-practitioner-turned politician. He represents Sankhalim in North Goa for a second time.
The Congress, which made a bid to capture power in the state after Parrikar’s death, was stopped in its tracks by timely intervention by the BJP central leadership. Allies the Goa Forward Party and the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party got one deputy CM post in the new ministry.
The BJP, which won only 13 seats – one less than the Congress—in the 2017 assembly polls, is heavily dependent on allies for survival of the ministry. Sawant is a graduate in Ayurveda Medicine and Surgery from the Ganga Education Society Ayurveda College in Kolahpur, Maharashtra. An RSS follower, Sawant’s wife Sulakshana is at the head of the BJP Mahila Morcha in Goa.
Sawant is a Maratha by caste, while Parrikar was Brahmin. While Parrikar was a towering figure in the state politics despite his simple manners and down-t0-earth styles, it remains to be seen whether the new CM will gain enough clout to carry the BJP-led government in smooth ways. IHN-NN