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Super 30 In Modi’s 3.0

| Updated: June 10, 2024 11:16

Narendra Modi has taken oath as India’s prime minister for a historic third consecutive term on Sunday at the Rashtrapati Bhavan in New Delhi. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) won the recently concluded Lok Sabha elections in the country. Here we list down the stated policy priorities and biographies of the incoming Council of Ministers.

Amit Shah

Having served as the Union Home Minister in the now-erstwhile government, Amit Shah has taken the oath as Cabinet minister on June 9. The Gandhinagar MP facilitated some of the boldest policies of the erstwhile government, including the dilution of the provisions of Article 370. Shah was also among the star-campaigners for the BJP during the polls. He won his own seat by a margin of about 7.4 lakh votes.  

 Rajnath Singh

Defence Minister in the now erstwhile government, Rajnath Singh secured the Lucknow seat by a margin of more than 1.35 lakh votes over his nearest rival of the Samajwadi Party. The M.Sc. (Physics) from Gorakhpur University (U.P.) also among the senior most leaders of the party had campaigned extensively during the elections. Being the Defence Minister, the incoming elected MP from Lucknow has been at the forefront of representing the government’s stance on issues concerning the criticism accorded to the Agniveer scheme and the situation at the Indo-China border.

Nitin Gadkari 

Among the Ministers in the erstwhile government who would find a favourable audience across the aisle in the Opposition, the incoming MP from Nagpur is set to continue his stay as a Minister. In his now erstwhile stay as the Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Nitin Gadkari has been associated with highway expansions and vehicle reforms. In June last year, the incoming Nagpur representative had emphasised that world-class roads were imperative to realise Prime Minister Modi’s vision of a $5 trillion economy. 

Mr. Gadkari won the Nagpur seat by a margin over his nearest rival from the Congress Vikas Thakre by a margin of more than 1.37 lakh votes. He has attended the G.S. Commerce College (Nagpur University) and has a degree in law from University College of Law (Nagpur).

Nirmala Sitharaman 

The incumbent Finance Minister is the member of the Upper House from Karnataka. Before becoming the Finance Minister during the second term of the Modi Government May 2019 onwards, Sitharaman also served as the Defence Minister between September 2017 and May 2019. She had also assumed the position of Minister of State for Finance, Corporate Affairs as well as Commerce and Industry during varied periods of the NDA’s stay in power since May 2014. She was first elected to the Upper House in 2014, then in 2016 and accorded the third term in July 2022.

The finance minister is a student of economics and attended the Seethalakshmi Ramaswamy College (Tiruchirapalli) and Jawaharlal Nehru University (Delhi).  

Piyush Goyal  

A chartered accountant and a management professional in terms of expertise, Goyal is set to extend his stay into the NDA 3.0 Cabinet. At varied stages since the NDA returned to power with Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the helm of affairs, Goyal has managed several portfolios. These include Railways, Finance, Corporate Affairs, Commerce, Textiles, Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution. The erstwhile member of the Upper House won from the North Mumbai constituency by a margin of approx. 3.6 lakh votes.

Hardeep Singh Puri

Re-elected to the Upper House in 2020, Mr Puri has served as the Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas alongside holding the Housing and Urban Affairs Portfolio. Before his foray into politics in 2018 from the Upper House, he has also served as the Ambassador and Permanent Representative of India to the United Nations. The retired diplomat also worked as a lecturer of History in Delhi’s St. Stephens College.

Pralhad Joshi 

The Union Minister for Parliamentary Affairs as well as Coal and Mines in the now erstwhile government, Mr. Joshi secured his continued stay at the Lower House for the fifth time, representing Dharwad (Karnataka). Mr. Joshi is a Bachelors in Arts from K.S. Arts College (Hubli, Karnataka) and has also attended the Karnataka University.  As the Coal Minister, Mr. Joshi has always was oft seen assuring the country about no coal shortages after the “unexpected situation” in 2022.

Arjun Meghwal  

The now erstwhile Union Minister of State (Independent Charge) at the Ministry of Law and Justice and at the Ministry of Culture won from the Bikaner Lok Sabha constituency by a margin of more than 55,000 votes. Having been first elected to the House of the People in 2009, Meghwal is looking for his fourth consecutive stay in Delhi.  

The Bikaner MP holds a master’s degree in political science and a master’s in business administration (MBA). He has attended Sri Dungar College (Bikaner) and the University of Philippine, Philippines.  

Bhupendra Yadav 

Member at the Upper House and Minister for Labour & Employment alongside Environment, Forest & Climate Change, Bhupender Yadav successfully competed from the Alwar constituency of Rajasthan. Yadav has for long served as the campaign observer for the party in crucial states, such as Bihar during the 2015 and 2020 Assembly elections and Madhya Pradesh in 2023. He attended the Government Law College in Ajmer.

Suresh Gopi

Holding the distinction of opening BJP’s account in the Left-administered Kerala, the action star has been inducted into NDA 3.0’s ministerial council. He won the Thrissur constituency by a margin of about 75,000 votes over his nearest rival Advocate V.S. Sunilkumar of the Communist Party of India.  Gopi had forayed into politics back in 2016 as a nominated member at the Rajya Sabha.  

H.D. Kumaraswamy  

Two-time Chief Minister of Karnataka is also among the inductees into the NDA Cabinet 3.0. He secured himself a third stay in the Lok Sabha having won from Mandya by a margin of over 8.5 lakh votes. The son of former Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda’s previous outings in the Lower House were in 1996 and 2009. His trysts with Karnataka’s top administrative office were fragile and lasted rather short. He became the Chief Minister first in February 2006 for a tenure that lasted until October in the succeeding year. In 2018, he became Chief Minister for the second time with support from its then-ally Congress. The tenure could again only last for one year.  

Sarbananda Sonowal 

Union Minister for Ports, Shipping and Waterways and the MP-elect from Dibrugarh is set to continue his stay at the House of the People and the ministerial council. The former Chief Minister of Assam contested a Lok Sabha election for the first time in 2004 as an Asom Gana Parishad candidate. Sonowal had defeated former Union Minister Paban Singh Ghatowar in Dibrugarh itself. He joined the BJP in 2011 and got re-elected to the Lok Sabha in 2014 from Lakhimpur. Having forayed as a student leader in 1992, Sonowal would go on to hold the top administrative post in the state between 2016 and 2021 before returning to Delhi.  In the 2024 elections, he defeated his nearest rival of the Assam Jatiya Parishad (AJP) Lurinjyoti Gogoi by a margin of about 2.8 lakh votes.    

Ram Mohan Naidu

Having successfully represented Srikakulam (Andhra Pradesh) in 2014 and 2019, Ram Mohan Naidu secured a hat-trick with his latest victory in the now-concluded general elections. The master’s in business administration from the Island University (New York, U.S.), the incoming TDP MP all through exuded confidence about the TDP-JSP-BJP combine being able to sweep the elections as people were fed up with the policies and administration of the YSRCP Government.  

As per data from the PRS Legislative Research, Naidu recorded an attendance of 84% in the 17th Lok Sabha. He is set to become the youngest-ever union minister at 36 years of age.

Manohar Lal Khattar 

The former Chief Minister of Haryana has been inducted into the ministerial council of NDA 3.0. He won from the Karnal Lok Sabha constituency by a margin of over 2.3 lakh votes. Earlier in March, the former Chief Minister and his entire cabinet resigned after cracks emerged with the state govt’s alliance partner JJP. The differences were over seat sharing for the Lok Sabha and Assembly elections. Khattar joins the league of elected members with former chief ministerial experience, including H.D. Kumaraswamy of Karnataka and Shivraj Chouhan from Madhya Pradesh, to be inducted to the cabinet.    

Pemmasani Chandrashekhar

The NRI-doctor turned industrialist, having secured the opportunity to represent Guntur (Andhra Pradesh) is the second person from the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) to find place in the NDA Cabinet. Pemmasani Chandrashekhar is an alum of the Osmania Medial College in Hyderabad. The incoming Guntur MP completed his residency in internal medicine at the Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, Pennsylvania.  

Essential to note, both Ram Mohan Naidu and Chandrashekhar have voiced their disquiet about how YSRCP spearheaded by Jagan Mohan Reddy have allegedly opposed Amaravati after being elected to power.

Jayant Chaudhary  

Grandson of former Prime Minister and Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh Chaudhary Charan Singh, Rashtriya Lok Dal (RLD) Jayant Chaudhary has been sworn-in as a Minister of State in the NDA 3.0 cabinet under PM Modi. Chaudhary had served as the member of parliament in the lower house, representing Mathura in 2009. In the subsequent election in 2014, he lost to actor-turned-politician of the BJP Hema Malini. The RLD chief formally late in March this year. In the recent elections, the RLD secured victories in Bijnor and Baghpat.  

Ramdas Athawale  

The sole representation from the Republican Party of India (RPI), Ramdas Athawale would continue his tenure at the NDA’s ministerial council. In the now-erstwhile government, he had served as the Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment. Athawale has been a part of the NDA since he quit the NCP-Congress alliance in 2011. He is presently a member of the Rajya Sabha representing Maharashtra and has been a three-time Lok Sabha MP.

Gajendra Shekhawat 

Having secured a victory by a margin of more than 1.15 lakh votes in the Jodhpur Lok Sabha constituency, Shekhawat is set for his third term in the House of the People. The Jodhpur MP’s first tryst with ministership happened during his second tenure. He served as the Union Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare between Sept 2017 and May 2019. It was in May 2019 that Shekhawat was promoted as the Minister of Jal Shakti.  Shekhawat is an M.Phil. in Philosophy from the JNV University (Jodhpur).

Ramnath Thakur 

The Janata Dal (United) MP from Bihar is also set to be inducted in the NDA Cabinet, Thakur is the son of the late Chief Minister of Bihar and Bharat Ratna Karpuri Thakur. While incumbent Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar pointed to his party promoting his son Ramnath Thakur into the party ranks, the RJD celebrated the birth centenary with party chief Lalu Prasad Yadav reminiscing the older days with the late Chief Minister. Prime Minister Narendra Modi had stated back then that Karpoori Thakur’s vision of social justice inspired their governance model.  

Rajiv Ranjan Singh 

Among Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s long-time allies, the latest appointment to the NDA 3.0 Cabinet has previously represented Begusarai (in 2004) and Munger (2009 and 2019). In the 18th Lok Sabha, Rajiv Ranjan Singh would be representing Munger for the third time having secured a victory over nearest rival from the RJD Anita Kumari. Belonging to upper caste Bhumihar community, Lallan Singh — as he is popularly known, has been one of steadfast allies of the Bihar Chief Minister — particularly during the periods of transition.  

Ashwini Vaishnaw 

Born in Jodhpur, Ashwini Vaishnaw is a member of the Upper House, representing Odisha. He was first elected to the Upper House in June 2019 and was accorded the Ministry of Railways alongside Communications, and Electronics and Information Technology in July 2021. The IIT-Kanpur alum was re-elected to the Upper House in April this year. The 1994-batch Odisha-cadre officer was fielded by the BJP notwithstanding the party not possessing the adequate numbers to ensure a victory. However, his nomination received support from the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) for the latter felt it was in the larger interest of the state.  

S. Jaishankar

The second-generation diplomat served as the foreign secretary, between Jan 2015 to 2018, before his plunge into politics. Jaishankar was appointed the Minister of External Affairs in May 2019. Prior to this, he has served as the Ambassador of India to the U.S., Singapore and China other than being the High Commissioner of India to Singapore at varied periods of his diplomatic career. He has attended Delhi University and Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) for pursuing political science and international relations.

Shivraj Singh Chouhan

The longest serving Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh is preparing for his sixth tenure in Delhi after about two decades. The Gold-medallist master’s in philosophy served as the Chief Minister of the central India state for nearly 18 years — the longest in Madhya Pradesh. The change of guard after the successful Assembly election last year led to three-time MLA Mohan Lal Yadav succeeding him to the top administrative office in Bhopal. Being among the star campaigners for the BJP, he was among the prominent people to have led the party to a total sweep in the state during the now-concluded general elections. He himself won from the Vidisha Lok Sabha constituency by a margin of approximately 8.2 lakh votes.

Jyotiraditya Scindia

The Minister for Civil Aviation in the now-erstwhile government Jyotiraditya Scindia successfully competed in his first election since switching allegiance to the Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) in 2020. He defeated his nearest rival by more than 5.4 lakh votes to regain his family bastion of Guna. Scindia has attended the Harvard University (U.S.) and Stanford University’s Graduate School of Business (U.S.).

Chirag Paswan 

The two-time MP of the Lok Janshakti Party (Ram Vilas) from Hajipur is set to be inducted into the NDA 3.0 cabinet. His party won all the five seats it contested, namely, Jamui, Khagaria, Samastipur, Vaishali and Hajipur. Before joining the NDA fold formally in July last year, the self-proclaimed ‘Hanuman’ of Prime Minister Modi stressed that that his party has always supported the issues presented by the BJP and endeavours to continue doing it.

Jitan Ram Manjhi 

Hindustani Awam Morcha (Secular)’s founder Jitan Ram Manjhi would also be inducted into the NDA 3.0 cabinet. He secured his victory from the Gaya Lok Sabha seat by a margin of more than 1 lakh votes.  Manjhi notwithstanding his position as an ally has backed the notion of a caste census being carried out at the national level. In an interview to The Hindu this April, Manjhi held that the caste census conducted by the Nitish Kumar-led government (with support from Congress and RJD) had flaws but overall it was fine.

Dharamendra Pradhan  

Having returned to contesting a direct election after a gap of fifteen years, Pradhan served as the Union Minister for Education and Skill Development in the now-erstwhile government. Until now, Pradhan represented Madhya Pradesh in the Upper House. The union minister had previously successfully competed in the 2004 general elections but lost in 2009. Hailing from Talcher (Odisha), Mr Pradhan won by a margin of about 1.2 lakh votes from Sambalpur (Odisha) Lok Sabha constituency.  

Mansukh Mandviya  

After two stints at the Rajya Sabha, the Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare successfully emerged victorious in the now-concluded general elections. He won from the Porbandar constituency by a margin 3.8 lakh votes. Mandviya holds a postgraduate degree in Political Science and holds a doctorate on the subject of ‘Role of Gram Vidhyapiths (Rural schools) in Community Development and Future Challenges’. His plunge into politics was with the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), the student-wing of the BJP, when he was 20.

Kiren Rijiju  

Set for his fourth tenure at the Lok Sabha, the former Union Cabinet Minister for Law and Justice won from the Arunachal Pradesh West constituency by more than 1 lakh votes. Rijiju served as the Minister of State for Home Affairs in the first tenure of the Modi govt between 2014 and 2019. Since then, during the second tenure, he has held several portfolios, including Food Processing, Earth Sciences as well as Youth Affairs and Sports. 

G. Kishen Reddy  

The Union Minister of Tourism as well as the Minister of Development of Northeastern Region, Reddy secured a second consecutive tenure at the Lok Sabha having won the Secundrabad Lok Sabha constituency. The social worker and agriculturist has also served as the Union Minister of State at the Ministry of Home Affairs (2019-21) after having served in the Telangana Legislative Assembly between 2014 and 2018.

Jadhav Prataprao Ganpatrao (Shiv Sena) and Rao Inderjit Singh (BJP) appointed as Minister of State (Independent Charge)

The Shiv Sena MP secured a win from Buldhana (Maharashtra). He would be headed to the House of the People for the fourth consecutive time. While the BJP MP secured himself a sixth tenure at the Lok Sabha having secured a seat from Gurgaon.

Oath of office for Minister of State (MoS) administered to 36 MPs  

The list includes Jitin Prasada (who won from Pilbhit), Shripad Yesso Naik (North Goa), erstwhile MoS Finance Pankaj Chaudhary (Maharajganj), Krishan Pal (Faridabad), erstwhile MoS Home Affairs Nityanand Rai (Ujiarpur), V. Somanna (Tumkur), S. P. Singh Baghel (Agra), Sobha Karandlaje (Bengaluru North), Shantanu Thakur (Bangaon) and Bandi Sanjay Kumar (Karimnagar), among others. 

B. L. Verma, presently serving as a member of the Rajya Sabha at the Upper House, along with L Murugan who lost from Nilgiris to DMK leader A.Raja were also administered the oath of office for Minister of State.  

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