The Council of Ministers headed by Manohar Parrikar in Goa is a mix of youth and experience with strong representation from regional parties which are key components in the BJP-led ruling alliance. Parrikar, sworn-in as chief minister today along with nine MLAs, has sought to maintain a fine balance by giving representation of important sections of society in the state.
Among the nine Ministers – two are from the BJP, three from the Goa Forward Party (GFP), two from the Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP) and as many Independents.
Veteran MGP leader Sudin Dhavalikar is a regional heavyweight. Sudin and his brother Dipak were Ministers in the erstwhile Laxmikant Parsekar-led government but were dropped in December last following differences with the then CM.
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MGP, which had a pre-poll alliance with the BJP during 2012 elections, severed its ties with the saffron outfit and contested the February 4 after joining hands with the Shiv Sena and newly launched Goa Suraksha Manch.
A four-time legislator, Dhavalikar was minister for public works department and transport in the previous BJP-led ruling coalition. He has held ministries earlier also.
Vijai Sardesai, a 46-year-old two-time legislator from Fatorda, was earlier in the Congress but quit the party in 2012 and successfully contested as an Independent.
Sardesai, a first time minister, mentored the GFP, which came into existence in January 2016 and won three seats in the just held assembly polls. Two of his candidates, Jayesh Salgaoncar and Vinod Palyekar, defeated BJP stalwarts.
BJP’s Francis D’Souza, who was Deputy Chief Minister in the Parsekar cabinet, is back in the government. An old BJP hand, he is a five-time legislator from Mapusa. The 62-year- old has been the minority’s face of the BJP and commands respect across cadres.
Manohar Asgaonkar won from Pernem on a BJP ticket in 2002 but joined the Congress in 2007 and was re-elected. However, he lost in the 2012 polls. Asgaonkar was listed to be Congress candidate from Pernem but switched over to the MGP and won the election.
Pandurang Madkaikar is among the two former Congress legislators who switched over to the BJP on the eve of Goa polls and won from Cumbharjua. He is among the two BJP legislators inducted into the Parrikar-led cabinet.
Rohan Khaunte is one of the Independents inducted in the Ministry. He has been elected twice from Porvorim.
In the just held polls, he won from Porvorim with the backing of the Congress. He first announced support to the Congress but later changed his stand and backed Parrikar.