Panaji, March 18 (IANS) In a new twist, Goa’s Deputy Speaker Michael Lobo on Monday said that the swearing-in of the new Chief Minister, which was scheduled to be held at 11 pm at the Raj Bhavan, has been called off.
“There many things which are to be discussed among allies and BJP leaders. The swearing-in will not happen at 11 p.m. tonight,” the BJP MLA told reporters at a city resort near here.
Lobo, however, did not say whether the much-anticipated event had been called off or postponed.
An hour ago, the state government’s Information and Publicity Department had issued an message that the swearing-in ceremony for the new Chief Minister had been organised at 11 pm on Monday night at Raj Bhavan.
Assembly Speaker Pramod Sawant was tipped to succeed Manohar Parrikar, who had died on Sunday evening after suffering from advanced pancreatic cancer for over a year, but there were reports that the Bharatiya Janata Party’s coalition allies – the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party and Goa Forward – were not on board with the decision.
Political sources said that the decision to cancel the 11 pm swearing-in ceremony was taken because the ongoing discussions which were being conducted by top BJP leaders, including Union Minister Nitin Gadkari, with allied parties vis-a-vis power sharing and distribution of portfolios had prolonged.