Labour Minister S.T. Chellapandian and Minister for Backward Classes and Minorities Welfare A. Mohammedjan dropped; S.P. Shunmuganathan and S. Abdul Rahim to be inducted

Two Ministers – S. T. Chellapandian and A. Mohammedjan – were dropped from the Cabinet on Monday.

They would be replaced with S. P. Shanmuganathan, MLA from Srivaikuntam constiuency, and S. Abdul Rahim from Avadi, near here.

This was the ninth shuffle after the present government assumed office in May 2011.

Both Mr Chellapandian and Mr Mohammedjan, who were Ministers for Labour and Backward Classes and Minorities Welfare nearly for two years, were known to maintain low profile.

Mr. Shanmuganathan, who was Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Minister till November 2011, will be Minister for Tourism. Mr. Abdul Rahim, who was vice-chairman of the Avadi Municipality twice, has been made Minister for Backward Classes and Minorities Welfare.

Announcing the changes, an official release issued by Raj Bhavan on Monday afternoon stated that the Ministers-elect would be sworn in on Tuesday evening.

Mr. Chellapandian and A. Mohammedjan had been dropped by Governor K. Rosaiah on the recommendation of Chief Minister Jayalalithaa.

Mr. Shanmuganathan, who is 58 years old, had also been made Tuticorin district secretary of the All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam. Mr Chellapandian was till now holding the post.

Re-allocation

The Chief Minister also re-allocated portfolios of three Ministers. Forests Minister K.T. Pachamal would hereafter handle the subject of Labour. P. Chendur Pandian, who was till now Tourism Minister, would be Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments (HR&CE) Minister. The subject of Forests had been given to M.S. M. Anandan, who was hitherto looking after HR&CE.

The 43-year-old Abdul Rahim told The Hindu that his father Sahul Hameed too was a member of the AIADMK since inception. As far as his association with the party was concerned, he was a member of the AIADMK faction led by Ms Jayalalithaa in 1989.

Asked whether he expected to become a Minister, he replied in the negative and said “it is all a gift of Amma [Ms Jayalalithaa].”

Six chairmen

In another order, the State government appointed six functionaries of the AIADMK to head its undertakings. J.C. D. Prabhakar, Villivakkam MLA and deputy secretary of the party minorities wing, had been made chairman of the Tamil Nadu Small Industries Development Corporation; A. Arunmozhithevan, former Chidambaram MLA and the party’s Cuddalore (west) secretary – Tamil Nadu Tourism Development Corporation; T.G, Venkatesh Babu, north Chennai secretary – Textile Corporation; G. Muniasamy, Ramanthapuram district secretary - Warehousing Corporation; P.R. Senthilnathan, Sivagangai district secretary – Backward Classes Economic Development Corporation and M. Ravichandran, Perambalur district secretary and who headed Handicrafts Development Corporation during 2004-2006 – State Agricultural Marketing Board.

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