BJP heavyweights sink without a trace

| | New Delhi
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BJP heavyweights sink without a trace

Monday, 10 June 2024 | Rajesh Kumar | New Delhi

BJP heavyweights sink without a trace

Several prominent faces of Modi Cabinet 2.0 have been dropped from the Cabinet in his historic third consecutive term beginning from Sunday.  The list include Union Minister and BJP leader Parshottam Rupala, Anurag Thakur, RK Singh, Smriti Irani, Narayan Rane, Ravi Shankar Prasad,  Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Ajay Mishra Teni, Arjun Munda, Ashwini Choubey, Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti, Kaushal Kishore, Mahendra Nath Pandey,  former Army Chief VK Singh, Kailash Chaudhary.

Rupala, who was given the Ministry of Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying in the Cabinet reshuffling of 2021, is likely to be dropped this time. During the election campaign, Rupala courted controversy by calling erstwhile ‘maharajas’ being subjects of the British and foreign rulers, angering the Kshatriya community.

The omission of Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Anurag Thakur has surprised many as he was not among the leaders invited to meet Modi.

The PM customarily interacted with new Ministers ahead of their swearing-in ceremony. Similarly Irani also could not get a call from the Prime Minister Office for about his place in Modi Cabinet. Irani had lost the Lok Sabha election from Uttar Pradesh's Amethi by over 1.6 lakh votes to Congress loyalist Kishori Lal Sharma. She was Women and Child Development Minister in the second term of the Modi Government. She had defeated Congress's Rahul Gandhi in his family bastion five years ago.

Thakur, who won the general election from Himachal Pradesh's Hamirpur, held the Sports, and Information and Broadcasting portfolios. Thakur clinched his fifth consecutive term from Himachal Pradesh's Hamirpur constituency, securing victory over Congress' Satpal Raizada by a significant margin of 1,82,357 votes.

"I am a party worker first. Being elected to the Lok Sabha for the fifth time is itself a great honour," he told reporters here when asked if he would be getting some key responsibility in Himachal Pradesh as he is not being inducted into Modi's new Council of Ministers.  Thakur said "the BJP has given me the opportunity to contest the Lok Sabha polls five times. There cannot be a bigger opportunity than this for me".

"I worked as a party worker in the past and would continue to work as a party worker in the future. Our entire effort is to take India on the path of progress. All of us will walk together because India is important, the Modi government is important and the country's progress is important," he said.

Rane was Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises Minister in Modi 2.0. He won the Lok Sabha election from Maharashtra's Ratnagiri-Sindhudurg.

Former Law  Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad has been dropped. Prasad has won Patna Sahib seat against Anshul Avijit of the Congress party.

Chandrasekhar, who lost to Shashi Tharoor in a close contest, dropped the cabinet from the new government. He was the Minister of State for the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship, and Ministry of Jal Shakti.

Union Power Minsiter RK Singh has also been dropped from the cabinet. Singh had lost his Arrah seat to CPI (ML) candidate Sudama Prasad, by a margin of over 60,000 votes. Minister of State for Agriculture and Farmers' Welfare Kailash Choudhary not only lost, he finished third in Rajasthan's Barmer.

Arjun Munda has also been dropped  from the cabinet as he Munda lost the Khunti Lok Sabha seat to Congress's Kalicharan Munda by 1.49 lakh votes. Union minister Ajay Mishra Teni also dropped in the Modi government 3. 0.

Former Union Minister and ex army chief VK Singh was also dropped. He was denied ticket from Ghaziabad seat. Union Minister Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti lost to Samajwadi Party's Naresh Chandra Uttam Patel by 33,199 votes from Fatehpur. Union minister Bhanu Pratap Singh Verma was also dropped. Verma had lost to SP’s Narayan Dhar Ahirwar in Mohanlalganj where SP’s RK Chaudhary defeated Union Minister and two-term sitting MP Kaushal Kishore by over 70,000 votes.

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