Gujarat cabinet reshuffle: 24 ministers take oath, first meeting at 4:30 pm
24 new ministers of the Bhupendra Patel-led government finally took their oath of office on Thursday at 1.30 pm.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah seems to have tamped down the simmering Gujarat party unit as 24 new ministers of the Bhupendra Patel-led government finally took their oath of office on Thursday at 1.30 pm.
The newly sworn-in cabinet will hold its first meeting at 4.30 pm today with the cheif minister and portfolio distribution is likely to be announced in another couple of days.
It, however, remains to be seen whether the government will have a smooth sailing in its last leg before polls with ill feelings from certain outgoing ministers.
Modi and Shah had hoped for a smooth handover in their home state, where they still hold pull years after stepping into the national arena. The estimate was partially correct as Vijay Rupani went down without a sound and Patel took over smoothly in his stead. The few wayward comments that spilled over from the former's deputy, Nitin Patel, who had expected the job to come to him were quickly swept away.
But when the BJP top brass indicated that they were going to adopt a 'no-repeat formula' and replace the entire cabinet, outgoing ministers offered some resistance before they finally gave in. This led to a postponement of the swearing-in ceremony.
Earlier, the ruling BJP announced that the event would be held on Wednesday afternoon and preparations for the same had started at the governor's house in the state capital. However, the plan was later dropped all of a sudden and banners of the swearing-in ceremony were also taken down. Neither the BJP nor the state government gave any reason for the postponement.
On Wednesday evening, the Chief Minister's Office announced that the swearing-in ceremony of new ministers will be held at 1.30 pm at the Raj Bhavan in the state capital Gandhinagar on Thursday.
Patel (59), a first-time MLA from Ahmedabad, took over as the new Gujarat chief minister on Monday after the sudden resignation of Vijay Rupani last Saturday.
Many believe that the "no-repeat" formula has been proposed keeping in mind the 2022 Assembly polls as the BJP, which has been in power in Gujarat for more than two decades, wants to go to voters with a clean slate.
Who are the new ministers?
Twenty-four ministers, including former Assembly Speaker Rajendra Trivedi and former state BJP president Jitu Vaghani, were sworn in as Gujarat ministers by Governor Acharya Devvrat. There were 10 cabinet ministers and 14 ministers of state: including five ministers of state with Independent charge.
The following were sworn in as cabinet ministers:
- Rajendra Trivedi
- Jitu Vaghani
- Rushikesh Patel
- Purnesh Modi
- Raghavji Patel
- Kanubhai Desai
- Kiritsinh Rana
- Naresh Patel
- Pradip Parmar
- Arjunsinh Chauhan.