KCR expands cabinet with 6 ministers; re-inducts son KTR, nephew Harish Rao
KCR, as the chief minister is popularly known, expanded his council of ministers on Sunday evening, inducting six more ministers, including his son and nephew. The overall strength of the cabinet has now gone up to 18, including the chief minister.Updated: Sep 08, 2019 22:50 IST
After a gap of nearly nine months, Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao’s son K T Rama Rao and nephew T Harish Rao are back in the state cabinet.
KCR, as the chief minister is popularly known, expanded his council of ministers on Sunday evening, inducting six more ministers, including his son and nephew. The overall strength of the cabinet has now gone up to 18, including the chief minister.
Newly appointed Telangana Governor Tamilisai Soundararajan, who was sworn-in by high court chief justice Raghavendra Singh Chouhan in the morning, administered oath of office and secrecy to the new ministers at a simple ceremony at Raj Bhavan at 4.14 pm.
Apart from Rama Rao and Harish Rao, the other ministers who took oath of office were: Sabita Indra Reddy, Satyavathi Rathod, Gangula Kamalakar and Puvvada Ajay Kumar.
All the ministers took their oath in Telugu. The chief minister later introduced all his cabinet colleagues to the Governor. A large number of party workers, officials and non-officials attended the swearing in ceremony.
The chief minister, who had not given cabinet berths to any woman MLA since he assumed charge in 2014, inducted two women ministers – Sabitha Indra Reddy and Satyavathi Rathod – this time.
Of them, Sabita was elected on a Congress ticket from Maheshwaram constituency in the December 2018 elections, but later defected to the TRS along with 11 other Congress MLAs.
KCR was sworn in as the chief minister of Telangana for the second successive term on December 13, 2018, along with home minister Mohammad Mahmud Ali. The chief minister expanded his cabinet by inducting 10 more ministers in the second phase on February 19 this year, 67 days after he formed the government.
However, the chief minister left out his son K T Rama Rao and nephew T Harish Rao, who were ministers in his first stint between 2014 and 18. While KTR was appointed as TRS working president, soon after the party returned to power in December, Harish Rao was sidelined.
Interestingly, KTR was allotted the same portfolios of Information Technology, Industries and Municipal Administration which he had held in the first tenure of the TRS government.
Harish Rao, who held the portfolio of major irrigation during the first stint and was instrumental in expediting projects like the Kaleshwaram lift irrigation scheme on Godavari, has now been allotted finance portfolio. The irrigation portfolio was retained by the chief minister himself.
Sabita Indra Reddy, who served as minister for mines and geology in the Y S Rajasekhar Reddy cabinet between 2004 and 2009, became the first woman home minister of Andhra Pradesh between 2009 and 2014.
After losing the elections in 2014, Sabita returned to the assembly in the December 2018 assembly elections and has now been given the portfolio of education which was hitherto been held by G Jagadeesh Reddy who has been shifted to the energy ministry.
The portfolios of other ministers are: Satyavathi Rathod: Women, child and tribal welfare, Gangula Kamalakar: BC welfare and civil supplies and Puvvada Ajay: Transport.
The full-fledged cabinet will meet later in the evening to approve the regular state budget for the rest of the financial year. The monsoon session of the state assembly will begin on Monday.