Fifteen ministers- 11 cabinet and four ministers of state- were sworn in on Sunday in Rajasthan.
Governor Kalraj Mishra administered the oath of office to the new ministers.
The 11 cabinet ministers include three- Mamta Bhupesh, Bhajan Lal Jatav and Tikaram Jully- who have been elevated from minister of state (MoS) to cabinet rank, while two- Vishvendra Singh and Ramesh Meena- are those who were sacked last year for rebelling and have been reinducted as cabinet ministers.
Hemaram Choudhary, Mahendrajeet Singh Malviya, Ramlal Jat, Mahesh Joshi, Govindram Meghwal and Shakuntla Rawat were also sworn in as cabinet ministers. Zahida, Brijendra Singh Ola, Rajendra Gudha and Murari Lal Meena were sworn in as MoS.
Ahead of the ceremony, Rajasthan Chief Minister Ashok Gehlot and Congress in-charge of the state, Ajay Maken, addressed the MLAs and other party leaders at the party office in Jaipur.
Taking to Twitter, Gehlot set eyes on the upcoming Assembly elections, stating that Congress will again form the government in 2023.
The Cabinet rejig comes about 16 months after the Congress government in Rajasthan survived a rebellion led by then Deputy Chief Minister Sachin Pilot.
राजस्थान सरकार में आज कैबिनेट मंत्री एवं राज्य मंत्री के रूप में शपथ लेने वाले सभी सदस्यों को हार्दिक बधाई एवं शुभकामनाएं। pic.twitter.com/yGfzLjJIEa— Ashok Gehlot (@ashokgehlot51) November 21, 2021
While Pilot loyalists Ramesh Meena and Vishwendra Singh have returned to the Ministry, Brijendra Singh Ola, Hemaram Choudhary and Murarilal Meena have made an entry.
Besides accommodating some Pilot loyalists as part of the peace formula, the reshuffle clearly is with an eye on Assembly elections just two years away.
There is an attempt to send a message to the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe communities as well.
Congress and independent MLAs, who had expectations from the Cabinet expansion but were not accommodated in the reshuffle, would be adjusted in political appointments.
Party sources said that 15 parliamentary secretaries and seven advisers to the chief minister will be appointed.
This will accommodate 22 MLAs who had expectations that they would be made part of the government.
Those left out will be given other political appointments as chairperson of various boards and corporations, the party sources said.