From former top cop to ‘Demolition Man’: All about nine new ministers of the Narendra Modi Cabinet
In the third major reshuffle ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, nine new members, including four former senior bureaucrats and BJP leaders from the poll-bound states of Karnataka, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh, were inducted in the list of Union council of ministers today.
President Ram Nath Kovind administered the oath of office and secrecy to all new ministers. The major revamp of the Cabinet is said to based on the formula of 4P – Passion, Proficiency, Professional and Political acumen – for progress.
Also Read: Modi Cabinet Reshuffle LIVE: Nine new ministers to take oath; Four ministers likely to be promoted
The nine who were inducted include Shiv Pratap Shukla (Rajya Sabha MP from Uttar Pradesh), Ashwini Kumar Choubey (Lok Sabha MP from Buxar, Bihar), Virendra Kumar (Lok Sabha MP from Tikamgarh, Madhya Pradesh), Anant Kumar Dattatreya Hegde (Lok Sabha MP from Uttara Kannada), R K Singh (Lok Sabha MP from Arrah, Bihar), Hardeep Singh Puri (ex-diplomat), Gajendra Singh Shekhawat (Lok Sabha MP from Jodhpur), Satyapal Singh (Lok Sabha MP from Baghpat), and Alphons Kannanthanam (ex-bureaucrat).
Here are their short profiles:
Ashwini Kumar Choubey (Lok Sabha MP from Buxar, Bihar)
Ashwini Kumar Choubey is a Lok Sabha MP from Buxar, Bihar. He is member of the Parliamentary Committee of Estimates and Standing Committee of Energy. He is also a Member of Central Silk Board.
Choubey has been elected to the Bihar Legislative Assembly for five consecutive terms had has held important portfolios including Health, Urban Development and Public Health Engineering as a Cabinet Minister of the Bihar government for eight years.
The 64-year-old BJP veteran is credited to have raised the slogan “Ghar ghar mein ho shouchalaya ka nirman, tabhi hoga ladli bitiya ka kanyadaan”, and has helped construct 11,000 toilets from Mahadalit families.
Shiv Pratap Shukla (Rajya Sabha MP from Uttar Pradesh)
A Rajya Sabha MP from Uttar Pradesh, Shiv Pratap Shukla is a member of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Rural Development. The lawyer-social worker was earlier a minister in UP. He was appointed a vice president of UP unit of the BJP in 2012.
He was elected a member of the UP Legislative Assembly for four consecutive times in 1989, 1991, 1993 and 1996.
Shiv Pratap Shukla served as a Cabinet minister for eight years in the UP government, and is known for his work in Rural Development, Education and Prison reform during his tenure.
A Law Graduate with an LLB from Gorakhpur University, Shiv Pratap Shukla started off early in politics as a student leader in the 1970s. He was imprisoned for 19 months under the Maintenance of Internal Security Act (MISA) during the Emergency.
Virendra Kumar (Lok Sabha MP from Tikamgarh, Madhya Pradesh)
Virendra Kumar is the Lok Sabha MP from Tikamgarh in Madhya Pradesh. From the convenor of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), District Sagar in 1977-79 to now being set to become a Union minister, it has been a long journey for Kumar, who was elected for a sixth Lok Sabha term in 2014.
He is the Chairperson of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Labour, and has been Chairman of the Joint Committee on Office of Profit and a Member of National Social Security Board.
Virendra Kumar has actively participated in the JP movement of the 1970s, and went to jails for 16 months under MISA during the Emergency.
Coming for the Scheduled Caste community, Virendra kumar has been inspiring youth in removing the barriers of caste and class, and works for building orpahanages, schools for divyang, and old age homes.
Anant Kumar Hegde (Lok Sabha MP from Uttara Kannada)
Anant Kumar Hegde is a Lok Sabha MP from Uttara Kannada, Karnataka and is a member of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Externam Affairs and Human Resource Development.
Having elected as an MP for the first time at the age of 28 years, has been a member of the 11th, 12th, 14th, 15th and 16th Lok Sabha from Uttara Kannada.
During his multiple stints in Parliament, he has been a member of multiple Parliamentary Standing Committees including the likes of Finance, Home Affairs, Human Resource Development, Commerce, Agriculture and External Affairs.
He has also been a member of the Spices Board of India for four terms. He is a practitioner of martial art Taekwondo.
Satya Pal Singh (Lok Sabha MP from Baghpat)
Satya Pal Singh, 61, is a Lok Sabha MP from Baghpat, Uttar Pradesh. A 1980 batch Maharashtra cadre IPS officer, he retired as the Mumbai Police chief.
He was honoured for his services by the Centre in 2008 with Antrik Suraksha Sewa Padak and a special medal for extraordinary work in naxal hit areas of Andhra Pradesh and Madhya Pradesh in 1990. Singh has written books, including on topics like tribal conflict resolution and naxalism.
Born in Basauli village in Baghpat, he has MSc and MPhil degrees in chemistry, an MBA in strategic management from Australia and an MA degree in public administration as well as a PhD on the naxalite movement.
Gajendra Singh Shekhawat (Lok Sabha MP from Jodhpur)
Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, 49, is a Lok Sabha member from Jodhpur in Rajasthan. He is also a national general secretary of the farmers' wing of the BJP.
A sports enthusiast, Shekhawat has participated at the national and all-India inter-university level in basketball. He currently is a member of the All India Council of Sports and the president of the Basketball India Players Association.
He has MPhil and MA degrees in philosophy from Jai Narain Vyas University, Jodhpur.
Hardeep Singh Puri (ex-diplomat)
Hardeep Singh Puri, 65, is a 1974-batch of Indian Foreign Service and served as India's Permanent Representative to the United Nations from 2009 to 2013.
Known for his experience and expertise in foreign policy and national security, he is the president and chairman of think-tank Research and Information System for Developing Countries (RIS) and was the vice president of the International Peace Institute, New York.
His four-decade career in diplomacy included critical roles as India's ambassador to Brazil and the United Kingdom, and Permanent Representative of India to Geneva.
An alumnus of The Hindu College, Delhi University, Puri was a student leader and active during the JP Movement. He briefly taught at St. Stephens College in Delhi before joining the IFS.
Raj Kumar Singh (Lok Sabha MP from Arrah, Bihar)
Raj Kumar Singh, 64, is a former IAS officer of the 1975-batch Bihar cadre and a former Union home secretary. He is a member of the current Lok Sabha representing Arrah in Bihar.
Singh studied English literature at St. Stephens College and is a law graduate. He also studied at the RVB Delft University in the Netherlands.
Alphons Kannanthanam (ex-bureaucrat)
Alphons Kannanthanam is a former 1979-batch Kerala cadre IAS officer. He is also a practicing advocate. Kannanthanam was known as 'Demolition Man' during his stint at the Delhi Development Authority for having ordered razing of thousands of illegal constructions.
Born in a non-electrified Manimala village in Kottayam district to a World War II veteran, he pioneered the literacy movement in India as district collector of Kottayam by making it the first 100 per cent literate town in India in 1989.
He retired from the IAS and was elected as an Independent member of the Kerala Assembly from Kanjirappally from 2006 to 2011.
Kannanthanam is a member of the committee set up to prepare the final draft of the National Education Policy, 2017. He has authored a book -- Making A Difference.