By A Akhter / NEW DELHI
The much-awaited reshuffle and expansion of the Union Council of Ministers took place today as some new faces inducted in the ministry. No minister has been dropped in the reshuffle.
While Minister of State (Independent charge) Prakash Javadekar elevated to the cabinet rank, 19 new ministers took oath as the minister of State in the government.
S S Ahluwalia, Faggan Kulaste, Ramesh Jigajinagi, Vijay Goel,Ramesh Chandappa, Anil Madhav Dave, Rajen Gohain, Parsottambhai Rupala, Dr Subhash Ramrao Bhamre, P P Choudhary, CR Chaudhary, Mansukh Mandaviya,Ajay Tamta, Dr. Mahendra Nath Pandey, Krishna Raj and M. J. Akbar administered oath of the office as ministers of state.
President administered the oath of office and secrecy to the new Ministers at a function in Rashtrapati Bhawan.
Earlier Prime Minister Narendra Modi has said that the Cabinet expansion will reflect the focus of the Budget and priorities of the NDA government.They are minimum government for maximum governance, expeditious clearance of office files, improving ease of doing business, reduced time for Cabinet note finalisation and government no longer working in silos.
This is the second expansion of the Narendra Modi government. With today’s induction, total number of Ministers in the Union Council has gone up to 83. However, as per Constitutional provisions, the total number cannot exceed 82 and it may require the dropping of some ministers to keep the number within the prescribed cap. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has chosen the new team after an exhaustive vetting process from various walks of life and with varied experience. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley who is holding additional charge of Corporate Affairs and Information and Broadcasting Ministries may be relieved of his additional burden.
Of the nineteen new ministers, 17 are from the BJP, one each from Apna Dal and RPI. There are two minority leaders – MJ Akbar and SS Ahluwalia and two women Anupriya Singh Patel and Krishna Raj.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has congratulated his newly sworn-in colleagues. In a tweet, the Prime MInister said they should work together to bring a positive difference for transforming India.
Meanwhile five ministers have been dropped from the Council of Ministers. They are Nihalchand, Ram Shankar Katheria, Sanwar Lal Jat, Manuskhbhai D Vasva and M K Kundariya.