Bracing for the 2024 Assembly elections, Odisha Chief Minister Navin Patnaik recast his council of ministers, inducting five women ministers, besides giving larger representation to the youth as 21 MLAs took the oath of offices.
The new council of ministers was constituted after all 20 ministers in Odisha had resigned on Saturday. The reshuffle has been done to give an opportunity to new faces and introduce a combination of young and experienced leaders from BJD into the cabinet ahead of the 2024 general and assembly elections.
As per ANI report, The swearing-in ceremony took place in the new convention centre of Lok Seva Bhawan in Bhubaneswar.
A total of 21 Ministers, including 13 Cabinet and 8 Minister of State (Independent charge), took oath in the Naveen Patnaik-led state council of ministers.
Five women MLAs were inducted in the council of ministers, including three as Cabinet Ministers. In the last cabinet, only two women were part of the council of ministers.
The newly-inducted women cabinet ministers are Pramila Mallik, Usha Devi and Tukuni Sahu.
Jagannath Saraka, Niranjan Pujari, Ranendra Pratap Swain, Prafulla Kumar Mallik, Pratap Keshari Deb and Atanu Sabyasachi Nayak are among Biju Janata Dal (BJD) MLAs who took oath as new cabinet ministers. Further, Pradip Kumar Amat, Naba Kisore Das, Ashok Chandra Panda and Rajendra Dholakia were also administered oath of office and secrecy by Governor Ganeshi Lal at the ceremony.
The MLAs who were inducted as Minister of State (Independent charge) include Samir Ranjan Dash, Aswini Kumar Patra, Pritiranjan Gharai, Srikanta Sahu, Tusharkanti Behera, Rohit Pujari, Rita Sahu and Basanti Hembram.
Some of the ministers who have performed well in their respective offices and still dropped from the cabinet are likely to get important responsibilities in the party organization in view of the next election, according to sources.
The Naveen Patnaik government has completed three years of its fifth consecutive term as the Chief Minister of Odisha on May 29.