Modi hands portfolios to all 16 ministers, keeps 9 with himself
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Chief Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday allocated portfolios to all his 16 ministers while keeping with himself nine departments including home, industries and ports. Modi had kept 14 portfolios with himself in his last government.
Nitin Patel, entrusted with four departments including key ones like finance and health, has emerged as the most important Cabinet member after Modi himself. Patel, who replaces Rajkot West MLA Vaju Vala, will soon present his budget. Vala, who has been MLA since 1985, holds the record of presenting budgets 18 times. The veteran has been appointed pro tem Speaker.
Modi's close aide Anandi Patel, whose margin of victory in the just concluded Assembly polls was the highest, retains her revenue portfolio, besides being given additional departments of urban development, urban housing development, road and buildings.
Saurabh Patel, who won from Akota and was the minister of state for industries in the last government, has now been elevated as a cabinet minister with key portfolios like energy, mines and minerals, petrochemicals, civil aviation and tourism that he held in his last stint too.
Saurabh's elevation was expected, given the fact that he is in-charge of Vibrant Gujarat Global Investors Summit 2013, to be held in January.
The industries department will be looked after by Modi himself since he has not appointed any minister of the state for the same.
Veteran BJP leader Bhupendrasinh Chudasma has been given education, including primary, secondary, technical and higher, along with law and justice, panchayat housing board and civil supplies.
Ramanlal Vora, the MLA from Idar, has been allotted the portfolios of social justice and welfare, cultural affairs and sports.
Former Speaker Ganpat Vasava, a tribal leader, has been given forest and environment, ST development, women and child welfare and parliamentary affairs.
Babu Bokhiria, who is back in cabinet after two terms, has been given agriculture, water resources, animal husbandry and fisheries. Bokhiria defeated state Congress chief Arjun Modhwadia from Porbandar.