Retaining Home and Finance with him, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot allocated new portfolios to ministers of his expanded cabinet.
Twelve new ministers were inducted and three ministers of state were elevated to the cabinet rank in the Rajasthan Cabinet reshuffle. The chief minister along with the finance and home portfolios, has kept taxation, personnel, general administration cabinet secretariat, information and public relation, and information technology and communication. The department for NRI and the Rajasthan State Investigation Bureau are also under Gehlot.
Following the expansion, the council of ministers in the state has 19 cabinet ministers and 10 ministers of state. The Rajasthan Cabinet can have a maximum of 30 ministers, including the chief minister. From the old cabinet, Pratap Singh Khachariyawas have been allocated food and civil supplies, while Shanti Dhariwal retained urban development and housing, and parliamentary affairs, Lal Chand Kataria retained agriculture and Pramod Jain Bhaya retained mines and petroleum. BD Kalla and Parsadi Lal Meena have been allocated education, and health and excise respectively.
The new ministers who got portfolios in the cabinet rank include Hemaram Choudhary (forest), Mahesh Joshi (PHED), Ramlal Jat (revenue), Ramesh Meena (panchayati raj and rural development), Vishvendra Singh (toursim and civil aviation), Govindram Meghwal (disaster management and relief) and Shakuntala Rawat (industries) and Mahendrajeet Singh Malviya (water resources). Vishvendra Singh and Ramesh Meena were sacked last year from the Rajasthan cabinet along with Pilot for rebelling against Gehlot’s leadership. Vishvendra Singh in this expanded cabinet got back his old portfolio of tourism. Mamta Bhupesh was allocated women and child development, Bhajan Lal PWD, Tikaram Jully social justice and empowerment, as they were elevated to cabinet rank from minister of state.
The newly inducted ministers of state and their portfolios are namely, Brijendra Ola (transport, devasthan and state enterprises), Murari Lal Meena (agriculture marketing, estate, tourism and civil aviation) and Rajendra Singh Gudha (sainik kalyan, home guards, panchayati raj and rural development). Zahida Khan (science and technology, printing and stationary, primary and secondary education, art, literature and culture) is also a new minister of state in the Gehlot cabinet. The ministers of state from the old cabinet who retained their portfolios are Arjun Singh Bamaniya (tribal area development), Ashok Chandna (sports and youth affairs) and Subhash Garg (technical education).
In the new and expanded cabinet, the three women ministers are Mamta Bhupesh and Shakuntala Rawat (cabinet rank) and Zahida (minister of state).Cabinet minister Mahesh Joshi is also chief whip while Minister of State Brijendra Ola is the son of former Union minister Sisram Ola. Minister of State Rajendra Gudha is one of the six MLAs who defected from BSP to the Congress.
Among the 15 ministers who took oath on Sunday, Hemaram Choudhary is the senior-most MLA. He is a six time MLA. Ramlal Jat is a four-time MLA; Mahendrajeet Singh Malviya, Vishvendra Singh, Ramesh Meena, Brijendra Ola and Murari Meena are three-time MLAs, while rest of the ministers who took oath on Sunday are two-time MLAs.
With PTI Inputs