Will hit the ground running: Punjab CM Bhagwant Mann | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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Will hit the ground running: Punjab CM Bhagwant Mann

Mar 17, 2022 04:24 AM IST

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and deputy CM Manish Sisodia were present at the swearing-in ceremony, which was held days after the AAP trounced its political opponents to win 92 seats in the 117-member Punjab assembly.

Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Bhagwant Mann was on Wednesday sworn in as the Punjab chief minister amid a sea of yellow at Khatkar Kalan, the ancestral village of freedom fighter Bhagat Singh, promising the people of the state that his inclusive government will deliver on key issues from the get-go.

Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Bhagwant Mann during the swearing-in ceremony as chief minister of Punjab at Khatkar Kalan village in Punjab, India on Wednesday, March 16, 2022. (Photo by Ravi Kumar/Hindustan Times)
Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Bhagwant Mann during the swearing-in ceremony as chief minister of Punjab at Khatkar Kalan village in Punjab, India on Wednesday, March 16, 2022. (Photo by Ravi Kumar/Hindustan Times)

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal and deputy CM Manish Sisodia were present at the swearing-in ceremony, which was held days after the AAP trounced its political opponents to win 92 seats in the 117-member Punjab assembly.

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“I am overwhelmed with this massive mandate, but we have to be responsible and not become arrogant or use objectionable language against anyone. My government will also work for those who did not vote for us,” Mann told the gathering immediately after taking the oath of office and secrecy.

Governor Banwarilal Purohit administered the oath to the 48-year-old leader, making him the youngest chief minister of Punjab in five decades. While Mann was the only AAP leader to take oath at the event, other members of the cabinet are likely to be sworn in on Saturday.

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“The work will start from today itself. We will not waste even a single day. We are already late by 70 years,” Mann said at the public meeting at Khatkar Kalan village in Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar district. Later in the day, he assumed charge at his office in Chandigarh.

The atmosphere at the venue, awash with yellow turbans and dupattas donned by thousands of party supporters who travelled from across the state, was charged. The crowd chanted slogans of “Inquilab Zindabad” and “Bole so Nihal” as it cheered the new CM, who also donned his trademark yellow turban.

AAP national convener Kejriwal and members of his cabinet, including Sisodia, Gopal Rai and Satyendar Jain, also attended the event sporting yellow turbans.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated the new CM. “Will work together for the growth of Punjab and welfare of the state’s people,” he tweeted.

In his eight-minute speech, Mann promised that his party’s government would deal with issues such as unemployment and corruption. The new CM said the condition of government schools and hospitals in the state will be improved just the way it was done by the AAP government in Delhi – a major promise made by the party during the election campaign. “Like people come from abroad to seek the schools and hospitals in Delhi, they will also come here,” he said. He also thanked Kejriwal for the change and improvement the AAP brought to politics in the country.

Mann, a former comedian, advised humility to AAP volunteers. “There should not be any report saying they have become arrogant,” he said.

Mann, while thanking the people for their presence, said the swearing-in ceremonies used to take place at cricket stadiums or Raj Bhawans, but this one was being held at the village of a martyr. “Khatkar Kalan is not new for me. I have been coming here regularly,” the AAP leader said.

Besides Mann’s children Seerat and Dilshan, who came from the US to be with him for the ceremony, his mother Harpal Kaur and younger sister Manpreet Kaur were also present.

Mann has been a Lok Sabha MP twice from Sangrur, and the 2022 polls marked his assembly election debut. The Punjab AAP president won from Dhuri, an assembly segment in Sangrur parliamentary constituency, by a margin of 58,000 votes.

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