First timers comprise one-third of PM Modi’s new cabinet

PTI

First timers comprise one third of the PM Modi new cabinet

First timers comprise one-third of the PM Modi new cabinet (Twitter Photo)

Prime Minister Narendra Modi began his second term after being administered the oath of office by President Ram Nath Kovind in the forecourt of Rashtrapati Bhavan on Thursday evening.

Modi was sworn in along with a 57-member Council of Ministers. The size of the Modi cabinet is smaller compared to the one that PM Modi ended his first tenure with.

The new Council of Ministers has 24 Cabinet ministers, 9 Ministers of State with independent charge and 24 Ministers of State.

There are a total of 24 new faces — seven hold Cabinet rank, one Minister of State (independent charge) and 16 Ministers of State.

One-third of the total ministers in the Modi’s 2.0 Cabinet are the first-timers, Most prominent among them are BJP president Amit Shah (Minister of Home Affairs) and former foreign secretary S Jaishankar (Minister of External Affairs), while Shah won Lok Sabha polls from Gandhinagar with a massive margin, Jaishankar is expected to reach Parliament through the Rajya Sabha route.

Former Chief Minister of Uttarakhand Ramesh Pokhriyal gets Ministry of Human Resource Development and Former Chief Minister of Jharkhand Arjun Munda gets Ministry of Tribal Affairs.

BJP’s Pralhad Joshi takes charge as Minister of Parliamentary Affairs; Minister of Coal; and Minister of Mines and Shiv Sena’s Arvind Sawant will take charge as Minister of Heavy Industries and Public Enterprise.

Anurag Singh Thakur (Minister of State in the Ministry of Finance; and Minister of State in the Ministry of Corporate Affairs), Bihar BJP chief Nityanand Rai (Minister of State in the Ministry of Home Affairs), former Kerala unit chief V Muraleedharan (Minister of State in the Ministry of External Affairs; and Minister of State in the Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs) are also among those who have become part of the Union Council of ministers for the first time.

Other BJP MPs who have become ministers for the first time include Suresh Angadi (Minister of State in the Ministry of Railways), Rattan Lal Kataria (Minister of State in the Ministry of Jal Shakti; and Minister of State in the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment), Renuka Singh Saruta (Minister of State in the Ministry of Tribal Affairs), Som Prakash (Minister of State in the Ministry of Commerce and Industry), Rameswar Teli (Minister of State in the Ministry of Food Processing Industries), Pratap Chandra Sarangi (Minister of State in the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises; and Minister of State in the Ministry Animal Husbandry, Dairying and Fisheries), Kailash Choudhary (Minister of State in the Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare) and Debasree Chaudhuri (Minister of State in the Ministry of Women and Child Development)

However several high-profile ministers from the previous government were left out of the line-up. Former Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had cited health reasons to not be part of the new government. Sushma Swaraj also opted out due to health reasons.

Other exclusions included Olympian Rajyavardhan Rathore, Maneka Gandhi- who will be the pro-tem or interim Speaker of the Lok Sabha Uma Bharti, Suresh Prabhu, Radha Mohan Singh, KJ Alphons, Jayant Sinha, JP Nadda and Vijay Goel.

(PTI)