The Narendra Modi government on Sunday promoted three ministers of state to Cabinet ranks and introduced nine new faces into the council of ministers. After the Cabinet reshuffle, Shiv Pratap Shukla, Ashwini Kumar Choubey, Virendra Kumar, Anantkumar Hegde, Raj Kumar Singh, Hardeep Singh Puri, Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, Satya Pal Singh and Alphons Kannanthanam hold positions as ministers of state.
Here’s a look at the nine new ministers:
- Shiv Pratap Shukla is a Rajya Sabha MP from Uttar Pradesh. He will be the minister of state in the Ministry of Finance under Arun Jaitley.
- Ashwini Kumar Choubey is a Lok Sabha MP from Buxar in Bihar. He will be the minister of state for health and family welfare. Choubey is a member of the Parliamentary Committee on Estimates and Standing Committee on Energy. He has been elected to the Lok Sabha for five consecutive terms.
- Virendra Kumar, a six-time Lok Sabha MP from Tikamgah, Madhya Pradesh, will be the minister of state in the ministries of women and child development and minority affairs. He has been the chairperson of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Labour.
- Anantkumar Hegde is a Lok Sabha MP from Uttara Kannada in Karnataka. He is a member of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Human Resource Development and a five-time MP. He took oath on Sunday as the minister of state in the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship.
- Raj Kumar Singh is an MP from Arrah in Bihar. He has been given independent charge of the ministries of power and new and renewable energy. A former Indian Administrative Service officer, Singh has been a member of a number of parliamentary standing committees, including on health and family welfare, law and justice, personnel and pensions and public grievances.
- Hardeep Singh Puri, an Indian Foreign Service officer of the 1974 batch, is the new minister of state (independent charge) for housing and urban affairs. He has been a diplomat for more than four decades – Puri was India’s permanent representative to the United Nations from 2009 to 2013, an ambassador to Brazil and the United Kingdom as well as India’s permanent representative to Geneva, Switzerland.
- Alphons Kannanthanam, a former IAS officer of the 1979 batch, has been appointed the minister of state (independent charge) for tourism and minister of state for electronics and information technology. He was the commissioner of the Delhi Development Authority, when he was dubbed the “demolition man” for razing around 15,000 illegal buildings. For this, Time magazine had listed Kannanthananam as one of the 100 Young Global Leaders in 1994.
- Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, a Lok Sabha MP from Jodhpur in Rajasthan, has been appointed the minister of state for agriculture and farmers welfare. He is a member of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Finance and the chairperson of the Fellowship Committee. He is the president of the Basketball India Players Association.
- Satya Pal Singh is the new minister of state in two ministries – human resource development and water resources. A Lok Sabha MP from Baghpat, Uttar Pradesh, Singh is a member of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Home Affairs and the chairperson of the Joint Committee on Offices of Profit. He is an Indian Police Service officer of the 1980 batch.