Three new Ministers to be sworn in on Thursday

Three members of the State Cabinet – Gokula Indira (Tourism), N.R. Sivapathy (School Education) and V.S.Vijay (Health) – were dropped on Wednesday, in yet another reshuffle of Ministers that came after a gap of nearly five months.

T.P. Poonachi, Vaigaichelvan and K. C. Veeramani will be inducted as Ministers at a ceremony on Thursday morning. The portfolio of P. Chendur Pandian has been changed.

K.P. Munusamy, Municipal Administration and Rural Development Minister, has also been given the portfolio of Law, which was hitherto handled by Mr. Sivapathy. Mr. Chendur Pandian will look after Tourism and his portfolio of Khadi and Village Industries has been assigned to Mr. Poonachi.

This is the eighth shuffle after the present government assumed office in May 2011. In October last, C.Ve. Shanmugam, the then Commercial Taxes and Registration Minister, was sacked and the portfolios of four Ministers were changed.

Mr. Poonachi, who is 61 years old, represents Manachanallur in Tiruchi district. In the 2011 Assembly polls, he defeated Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam nominee and former Forests Minister N. Selvaraj by about 20,000 votes.

Dr. Vaigaichelvan, who was a Government Whip in the Assembly in October, will hold the portfolios of School Education, Archaeology, Sports, Youth Welfare, Tamil Language and Culture, which were with Mr Sivapathy till now.

The 44-year-old Vaigaichelvan, who defeated the DMK’s prominent face K.K.S.S.R. Ramachandran in 2011, represents Aruppukottai in the Assembly. In the recently-held sitting of the House, he made a scathing attack on DMK president M. Karunanidhi.

Mr. Veeramani, Jolarpet MLA, has been given the subjects of Health, Medical Education and Family Welfare, which were held by Dr. Vijay.

Mr Munusamy is the sixth person to hold the portfolio of Law, the previous Ministers being E. Subaya, G. Senthamizhan, M. Paranjothi, Mr Shanmugam and Mr Sivapathy.

Changes in party posts

Ms. Gokula Indira has been made party’s organising secretary.

She was till now secretary of the party’s women wing.

This change was announced by Chief Minister and AIADMK general secretary Jayalalithaa in a release.

Some more changes in the position of party office-bearers were also effected. Mr. Vijay, sacked as Health Minister, also lost his position of Vellore District Secretary.

He was replaced with S.C. Ezhumalai, who was till now district secretary of the MGR wing.

N.R. Sivapathy was removed from the post of Tiruchi Rural District Secretary. R. Manoharan, Tiruchi Urban District Secretary and Tiruchi (East) MLA, will hold the post for the time being.

Vellore Rural East District Secretary R. Vilvanathan has been succeeded by S.R. K. Appu and Kancheepuram West District Secretary V. Somasundaram by P. Ganesan, Uthiramerur MLA.

Second time

Mr Sivapathy, who became Minister twice since May 2011, had a longer spell when he returned to the State Cabinet in January 2012. When he was dropped for the first time in November 2011, he held the portfolio of Animal Husbandry.

A few months later, he was made School Education Minister. In October, he was also given the subject of Law.

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