June 14, 2024
June 14, 2024
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33 First-Time Ministers, 6 From Well-Known Political Families

3 former chief ministers are among those joining PM Modi’s council of ministers. (File)

New Delhi:

With the third Modi government taking shape on Sunday, 33 first-timers will grace its ranks and at least six of them hail from well-known political families.

Those joining Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s council of ministers for the first time include three former chief ministers — Shivraj Singh Chouhan (Madhya Pradesh), Manohar Lal Khattar (Haryana) and HD Kumaraswamy (Karnataka).

Shivraj Singh Chouhan is a five-time MP from Vidisha, a constituency represented by former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and former External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj in the past.

He is also the longest-serving chief minister of Madhya Pradesh.

A former Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) pracharak, Khattar served as the chief minister of Haryana twice. He resigned from the post in March after ally JJP withdrew support from the government.

Seven first-time ministers in the Modi government belong to the allies: TDP’s K Rammohan Naidu and Chandrasekhar Pemmasani; JDU’s Lalan Singh and Ram Nath Thakur, RLD’s Jayant Chaudhary, LJP’s Chirag Paswan and HD Kumaraswamy of the JD(S).

Jayant Chaudhary, the 45-year-old national chairman of the Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD), is the grandson of Chaudhary Charan Singh — India’s fifth Prime Minister — and the son of former Union minister Chaudhary Ajit Singh.

Chaudhary, previously associated with Akhilesh Yadav’s Samajwadi Party, joined the NDA ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha elections after the BJP posthumously honoured his grandfather with the Bharat Ratna in February this year.

Under his leadership, the RLD secured two seats in western Uttar Pradesh – Baghpat and Bijnor – with significant margins of over 4,88,000 and 37,500 votes.

Chirag Paswan, son of the late Ram Vilas Paswan, one of Bihar’s most influential leaders, is set to make his debut as a minister in the central government.

He won the Hajipur seat, held by his father for a record nine times, by a margin of 1.7 lakh votes in the 2024 Lok Sabha polls.

His party, LJP (Ram Vilas), swept all five seats it contested in Bihar under the NDA umbrella, making a resounding comeback from the tumultuous period following Ram Vilas Paswan’s death in 2020.

Ram Nath Thakur, from the Janata Dal (United), is the son of Karpoori Thakur, a renowned socialist leader and former Chief Minister of Bihar who was awarded the Bharat Ratna earlier this year.

Hailing from Samastipur, the 74-year-old leader is known for his close association with Nitish Kumar and his influence among the most backward classes. He previously served as a Bihar minister between 2005 and 2010.

Ravneet Singh Bittu, the grandson of Punjab’s former Chief Minister Beant Singh, who was assassinated by a Khalistani organisation in 1995, is a new entrant to the Modi ministry.

Bittu switched from the Congress to the BJP ahead of the Lok Sabha elections. He contested from Ludhiana and lost to Punjab Congress chief Amarinder Singh Raja Warring by over 20,000 votes.

Bittu (48), previously represented Punjab’s Anandpur Sahib in Lok Sabha from 2009 to 2014 and Ludhiana from 2014 to 2024.

Raksha Khadse, the daughter-in-law of senior NCP leader Eknath Khadse, who played a key role in building the BJP in Maharashtra, was sworn in as Union minister.

She retained her Raver seat, winning it for the third time on the trot. At the age of 26, she along with Heena Gavit, became the youngest MPs after winning the 2014 general elections. Her husband Nikhil Khadse allegedly died by suicide at the age of 37.

From being one of the youngest ministers in the Manmohan Singh-led UPA government, Jitin Prasada will return to the Union Council of Ministers after 10 years. He quit the Congress to join the BJP in 2021.

His father Jitendra Prasada, a former vice-president of the Congress, served as political advisor to two prime ministers — Rajiv Gandhi in 1991 and P V Narasimha Rao in 1994.

A trusted friend of Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, Rajiv Ranjan, popularly known as Lalan Singh, represents the Munger Lok Sabha seat in Bihar.

The new faces also include Suresh Gopi, the actor-turned-politician who scripted history by becoming the first BJP MP from Kerala.

The first-timers from the BJP are Kamlesh Paswan (Uttar Pradesh), Sukanta Majumder (West Bengal), Durga Das Uikey (Madhya Pradesh), Raj Bhushan Chaudhary (Bihar), Satish Dubey (Bihar), Sanjay Seth (Jharkhand), C R Paatil (Gujarat), Bhagirath Chaudhary (Rajasthan), Harsh Malhotra (Delhi), V Somanna (Karnataka), Savitri Thakur (UP).

Kamaljeet Sehrawat (Delhi), Prataprao Jadhav (Maharashtra), George Kurian (Kerala), Kirti Vardhan Singh (UP), Tokhan Sahu (Chhattisgarh), Bhupathi Raju Srinivasa Varma (Andhra Pradesh), Nimuben Bambhniya (Gujarat), Murlidhar Mohol (Maharashtra), Pabitra Margherita (Assam) and Bandi Sanjay Kumar (Telangana), are also among the BJP first-timers.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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