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PM Narendra Modi’s new Cabinet holds its first meeting

Ahead of the first cabinet meeting of the new government, portfolios were allocated to the 57 ministers who took oath on Thursday.

india Updated: May 31, 2019 18:27 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Union Cabinet,Narendra Modi,Council of Ministers
Prime Minister Narendra Modi arrives for the first cabinet meeting of his new government.(Arvind Yadav/HT PHOTO)

Less than 24 hours after the swearing-in ceremony, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s new cabinet met for the first time Friday afternoon.

Earlier in the day, portfolios were allocated to the 57 ministers who took oath on Thursday.

Amit Shah, the big entry in Prime Minister Cabinet, has been given the Home Ministry, Rajnath Singh moved to Defence Ministry and Nirmala Sitharaman has been appointed the Finance Minister in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Cabinet, according to a Rashtrapati Bhawan communiqué. The surprise entry in the cabinet, S Jaishankar, has been given the Foreign Ministry.

Before heading for the cabinet meeting, many ministers formally took charge of their departments, among them were Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman, HRD minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank and Culture minister Prahlad Singh Patel. Cabinet debutant S Jaishankar is likely to take charge of foreign ministry at 4pm.

PM Modi, before the allocation of portfolios, had back-to-back five bilateral meetings with various heads of states in which he met Lankan president Maithripala Sirisena and Mauritius PM Pravind Jugnauth among others.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Council of Ministers were sworn in on Thursday at Rashtrapati Bhavan. The Union Cabinet for the 17th Lok Sabha includes 24 cabinet ministers, 9 ministers of state with independent charge and 24 Ministers of State (MoS).

Top leaders who were sworn in as cabinet ministers include Amit Shah, Rajnath Singh, Nitin Gadkari, DV Sadananda Gowda, Nirmala Sitharaman, Ram Vilas Paswan and former foreign secretary S Jaishankar, a surprise pick.

Rajnath Singh, Nirmala Sitharaman, Nitin Gadkari, Ravi Shankar Prasad, Sadanand Gowda and Representatives of BJP allies -Ram Vilas Paswan (LJSP), Harsimrat Kaur (Akali Dal), Arvind Sawant (Shiv Sena) and Ramdas Athawale (RPI-A) who will be a Minister of State (MoS) also took oath.

Some of the key ministers in the previous Modi government, including Sushma Swaraj, Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore and Maneka Gandhi, are not a part of the new council of ministers, while former finance minister Arun Jaitley opted out of the new cabinet citing health reasons.

First Published: May 31, 2019 15:16 IST