Modi 3.0 Cabinet: New Government signals both change, continuity

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Modi 3.0 Cabinet: New Government signals both change, continuity

Wednesday, 12 June 2024 | Pioneer News Service | New Delhi

Several Ministers including Amit Shah, S Jaishankar, Manohar Lal, JP Nadda and Ashwini Vaishnaw among others on Tuesday assumed charge of their respective Ministries.  The new government signalled both change and continuity.

A day after the much anticipated portfolios were announced and two days after Modi and 71 ministers were sworn in at a grand ceremony in Rashtrapati Bhavan, there were flowers and felicitations aplenty in the corridors of power.

In a seamless transition from the previous government to the present one, the four big frontline portfolios stay the same -- Amit Shah for Home, S Jaishankar for External Affairs, Nirmala Sitharaman for Finance and Rajnath Singh for Defence.

‘Bharat First and Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ (The world is one family) will be the two guiding axioms of Indian foreign policy, Jaishankar said shortly after taking over.

On ties with China going forward, Jaishankar said some issues remained along the border with that country and efforts will be made to resolve them. "Our focus with regard to China will be on how to resolve the remaining issues," he told reporters.

BJP president J P Nadda assumed charge of the Health as well as the Chemical and Fertilisers ministries.

Several ministers made initial statements as they took charge of their ministries.

Ashwini Vaishnaw who continues to hold the key portfolios of Railways and Electronics and Information Technology, assumed charge as Information and Broadcasting minister in the presence of senior officials, including Information and Broadcasting Secretary Sanjay Jaju.

"Prime Minister Narendra Modi has made service to the poorest of poor the motto of his life and the main aim of the government. He has taken measures for welfare of the farmers, youth and empowerment of women," Vaishnaw told reporters.

Donning his MeitY hat as he resumed charge of the ministry, he said the government will push ahead with its tech-driven agenda of cementing India's global lead in semiconductor and electronics manufacturing and as a technology and digital hub.

Jitendra Singh, who took office as Union Minister of State (MoS) for Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions at his North Block office, said good governance reforms undertaken in the last decade will continue to increase citizen-centricity and ensure ease of living for every citizen. Modi is in charge of the ministry.

"Last 10 years have witnessed a series of revolutionary governance reforms happening under the guidance of PM Modi, which were basically inspired by the spirit of 'minimum government, maximum governance' and increasing citizen centricity to bring ease of living for every citizen of the country," Singh told reporters.

Jyotiraditya Scindia, appointed Communications minister, said both the telecom sector and the India post division have key roles to play at the global as well as local stage.

The minister recalled his previous tenure as the Minister of State for Communications about one and half decades ago.

"It is also a little bit like coming full circle for me. I worked as a junior minister in this department many many years ago in 2007, 2008 and 2009. Therefore for me it is also a department with which I have had tremendous emotional ties," Scindia said.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kiren Rijiju, also given the responsibility of Minority Affairs, said he will make all efforts to take everyone along to ensure smooth functioning of Parliament. There was no need to pull each other down on the basis of numerical strength, he added.

"We need not pull each other down on the basis of numerical strength. People use muscle power outside Parliament, but inside the House, we should use vocal power for good debate," he said after assuming charge in the presence of his predecessor Pralhad Joshi and Ministers of State Arjun Ram Meghwal and L Murugan.

Annapurna Devi, the country's new Women and Child Development minister, said she will work towards fulfilling Prime Minister Narendra Modi's dream of a Viksit Bharat.

Culture Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat echoed her and said his ministry will contribute towards the vision of making a Viksit Bharat.

Senior BJP leader from Karnataka Pralhad Joshi took over as minister for Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution and said his priority would be to implement the 100-day agenda of the government and further strengthen the food security system.

"I am thankful to the prime minister who has given me the responsibility of this important department which is linked to the common people, where we provide free foodgrains to 80 crore people," Joshi told reporters.Rashtriya Swayam Sangh(RSS)pracharak, Haryana's former chief minister and now Union Power minister Manohar Lal met heads of public sector undertakings in the power sector and other other top brass of his ministry to understand the dynamics of the sector.

Chants of “Bharat Mata Ki Jai” and “Vande Mataram” were heard from party supporters when the BJP's Gujarat unit chief Chandrakant Raghunath Patil took charge of the Jal Shakti ministry.

Before doing so, he took to social media to state that the conservation and enhancement of the country's water resources is a "sacred goal".

Promising continuity, new Environment Minister Bhupender Yadav said the Modi government will continue to balance development with environmental protection and conservation

Listing the major achievements of the Modi-led government, he said, "India met the quantitative and qualitative targets set under its Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) - the national climate plan to achieve Paris Agreement goals - nine years ahead of schedule."

All eyes were also on the allies of the BJP who were given ministerial berths. There were jubilant scenes when Chirag Paswan, the two-time MP from Bihar and chief of Lok Janshakti Party (Ram Vilas), took office as minister of Food Processing Industries after a small religious ceremony in the presence of his mother and other family members.

"There is huge potential in the food processing sector, and the 100-day plan will be ready after discussion with ministry officials," Paswan said, underscoring the sector's importance in directly benefiting farmers.

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