Narendra Modi

Narendra Modi was sworn in as the Prime Minister of India for his third consecutive term, alongside 72 ministers, in a ceremony held at the Rashtrapati Bhawan on Sunday. This feat places the 73-year-old Modi in the distinguished company of Jawaharlal Nehru, India’s first Prime Minister, who also served three consecutive terms.

This term marks a significant shift as the BJP, for the first time, will be governing as a coalition after losing its outright majority in the Lok Sabha following a fiercely contested election. In adherence to ‘coalition dharma,’ the new Council of Ministers includes 11 members from NDA partners, forming a 72-member team. This comprises 30 Cabinet Ministers, 5 Ministers of State with Independent Charge, and 36 Ministers of State. The distribution of portfolios will be announced soon.

The new Council of Ministers promises broad representation, including 27 from Other Backward Classes (OBC), ten from Scheduled Castes (SC), five from Scheduled Tribes (ST), and five from minority communities. Notably, 18 senior ministers will be heading major ministries. Some prominent figures were also absent from the new Cabinet lineup.

Key Highlights

  • The swearing-in ceremony was presided over by President Droupadi Murmu on the lawns of Rashtrapati Bhavan.
  • Modi is the first Prime Minister since Nehru to be elected for a third straight term, now leading a full-fledged coalition government.
  • New faces in the Cabinet include BJP chief JP Nadda, former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, and former Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar.
  • Returning key ministers include Amit Shah, Rajnath Singh, S Jaishankar, Nirmala Sitharaman, Nitin Gadkari, and others.
  • NDA allies like Chirag Paswan (LJP), HD Kumaraswamy (JD(S)), Jitan Ram Manjhi (Hindustan Awam Morcha), Lalan Singh (JD(U)), and Kinjarapu Ram Mohan Naidu (TDP) were also sworn in as Union ministers.
  • Jitendra Singh, Ramdas Athawale, Nityanand Rai, Arjun Ram Meghwal, Shobha Karandlaje, Shripad Naik, Rao Inderjit Singh, and Krishan Pal Gurjar were reinstated as Ministers of State. Firebrand MP from Telangana, Bandi Sanjay, was sworn in as a Union minister for the first time. Unexpectedly, Ravneet Singh Bittu, who lost in Ludhiana, also secured a ministerial position.
  • Eknath Shinde’s Shiv Sena achieved a ministerial position with Buldhana MP Prataprao Jadhav taking oath as MoS. In another win for Chandrababu Naidu’s party, the wealthiest MP, Dr. Pemmasani Chandrasekhar, obtained a ministerial role. RLD chief Jayant Chaudhary was sworn in as MoS, and Apna Dal’s Anupriya Patel made a return.
  • Approximately 8,000 guests, including leaders from neighboring countries and the Indian Ocean Region such as Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, the Maldives, Bhutan, Nepal, Mauritius, and Seychelles, attended the oath-taking ceremony.
  • Congress President Mallikarjun Kharge attended Narendra Modi‘s swearing-in ceremony, citing it as his “constitutional duty” as Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha. However, several opposition party leaders, including those from the Trinamool Congress and the Left, declined to participate despite receiving invitations.
  • The BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) secured 293 seats in the recent Lok Sabha elections. The BJP won 240 seats, falling short of the majority mark of 272, signaling a significant change from the party’s decade-long single-party dominance.

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