After being sworn-in as the Goa Chief Minister, Pramod Sawant on Tuesday asked his friends and BJP workers to refrain from presenting him with bouquets in view of the state mourning declared as a mark of respect to late Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar whom he described as his "idol and mentor".
63-year-old Parrikar died on Sunday evening after a prolonged battle against cancer and a seven-day state mourning in Goa was declared the next day.
In a Facebook post, Sawant said, "I have taken charge as Chief Minister with utmost humility and sense of gratitude towards my idol and mentor Manoharbhai. However the state mourning continues and hence I appeal to all my friends, family and karyakartas to refrain from presenting me with bouquets and greetings. Rather I look forward to your blessings and support in carrying ahead the glorious legacy of commitment towards good governance! Jai Hind!"
He was sworn-in as the Chief Minister in the wee hours of Tuesday.
In addition, 11 other leaders, who were part of the erstwhile Goa Cabinet, including Sudhin Dhavalikar of Maharashtrawadi Gomantak Party (MGP), Vijay Sardesai of Goa Forward Party (GFP) and BJP MLA Vishwajit Rane, took oath as Cabinet ministers.
Talking to ANI after taking oath, Sawant said his aim is to complete the projects that were initiated under Parrikar's leadership.
"I feel we must proceed together with the support of the allies. The aim is to complete all the work that had begun under the Manohar Parrikar government. I may not be able to perform as well as him (Parrikar), but I will try my best," he said.
45-year-old Sawant represents Sanquelim Assembly constituency. His wife, Sulakshana Sawant, is the president of the women's wing of BJP in Goa.
Goa Assembly has a strength of 40 members with four seats lying vacant due to deaths of two legislators, including Parrikar, and resignation of two others. The by-polls to three seats are scheduled to take place on April 23.
BJP currently has 12 legislators and enjoys the support of legislators from GFP, MGP, and three independents. GFP and MGP have three MLAs each.
Congress, on the other hand, has 15 MLAs in the House and is also short of the majority mark without external support.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)