Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Wednesday inducted three new faces in his team of ministers. They are Beni Prasad Verma, who has been made minister of state for steel (Independent Charge); KC Venugopal, minister of state for power; and Ashwani Kumar, who has been made minister of state for planning and parliamentary affairs and science and technology and earth sciences.
Congress' Rajya Sabha member Ashwani Kumar, who was on Wednesday inducted into the union council of ministers as a minister of state, is a lawyer who has held serval organisational responsibilities.
He was a minister in the previous United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government.
K C Venugopal
New Minister of State for Power K C Venugopal is a first-time MP but a former Kerala minister and three-time lawmaker in the state assembly.
Elected to the Lok Sabha from the Alappuzha constituency, Venugopal, 47, belongs to the influential Nair community.
Beni Prasad Verma
Beni Prasad Verma, who has thrived on anti-Congress activism for a greater part of his political career, returns to the Union Council of Ministers after a gap of over a decade. He will be the Minister of State with Independent charge of Steel Ministry.
In 2009, he represented Gonda Lok Sabha constituency in UP as a Congress nominee.