A six-member Congress government headed by V Vaithilingam assumed office in Puducherry on Thursday ending a nearly year-long factional feud in the ruling party which led to the exit of two-time Chief Minister N Rangasamy.
The 58-year old Vaithilingam, who along with four of his ministerial colleagues in the previous six-member cabinet spearheaded the revolt against Rangasamy, took over the reins of the UT for the second time after nearly 12 years.
E Valsaraj, M Kandasamy, Malladi Krishna Rao, M O H F Shahjahan, all ministers in the previous government, were sworn in along with A Namassivayam, a former minister.
Lt Governor Govind Singh Gurjar administered the oath of office and secrecy to Vaithilingam, who held the Power and Industries portfolios in the previous ministry, and others.
Rangasamy was conspicuous by his absence at the swearing-in ceremony which was attended by among others CWC member V Arunkumar and Union Minister of state V Narayanasamy and leaders of allied parties.
The formation of the new ministry followed the open feud between Rangasamy and his cabinet colleagues and repeated efforts by party high command failed to ensure rapprochement and finally a change of guard had to be carried out.
Soon after assuming charge, the chief minister chaired a cabinet meeting which decided a slew of sops, including a Rs 30 cut in the price of domestic LPG cylinder, hike in the HRA for government employees and education assistance.