Nitish Kumar, who led the NDA to a landslide victory in the Bihar elections, was today sworn in as chief minister for a second consecutive term heading a 30-member ministry.
Sushil Kumar Modi of BJP was sworn in as a cabinet minister. He will be the deputy chief minister. Besides, 18 MLAs from JD(U) and 10 from BJP took oath as ministers.
No leader from the opposition parties, which were decimated in the polls, was present at the swearing-in ceremony. Governor Devanand Konwar administered the oath of office and secrecy to them at a function held at the sprawling Gandhi Maidan.
The swearing-in was conducted under tight security as the function coincided with the 26/11 terror strike in Mumbai. Among the ministers 11 are from upper castes, nine from backward castes and four each from Extremely Backward Castes and Schedule Castes. Two are Muslims.
59-year-old Kumar inducted his close confidante and state JD(U) president Vijay Kumar Choudhary and gave cabinet berths as reward to Ramai Ram and Shyam Rajak, who had parted ways with RJD chief Lalu Prasad and joined JD(U).
He retained Vijendra Prasad Yadav, Narendra Narayan Yadav, Narendra Singh, Brishen Patel, Renu Kumari, Jitan Ram Manjhi, Gautam Singh, Damodar Raut, Sahid Ali Khan and Hariprasad Sah, who were ministers during his previous tenure.
Among the new entrants in the ministry from JD(U) are Praveen Amanullah from the Sahebpur Kamal constituency in Begusarai district. She is wife of Principal Secretary to state cabinet coordination department Afzal Amanullah.
Nitish Mishra, son of former chief minister Jagannath Mishra, senior MLC Bhim Singh, Awadhesh Kushwaha and legal expert and former advocate general P K Sahi took oath as ministers. Mishra was state minister for disaster management in the previous NDA government.
Besides 58-year-old Modi, others from BJP who took oath are Nand Kishore Yadav, Ashwini Kumar Choubey, Prem Kumar, Giriraj Singh and Janardan Sigriwal, who were ministers in the previous government.
New faces from BJP who took oath are Sukhda Pandey, Sunil Kumar Pintoo, Satyadeo Narayan Arya and Ramadhar Singh. The ceremony was attended by BJP President Nitin Gadkari, senior BJP leaders L K Advani, Arun Jaitley, Sushma Swaraj, Rajiv Pratap Rudy, Rajnath Singh, Anant Kumar and Shatrughan Sinha.
From the JD(U), its National President Sharad Yadav, besides former chief minister Jagannath Mishra and several members from the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha from Bihar were present.