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New Gujarat Ministers to be sworn in today

Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel at Raj Bhavan in Gandhinagar. File photo   | Photo Credit: VIJAY SONEJI

Amidst infighting in the Gujarat Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over ministerial berths, the new Cabinet is to be sworn in on Thursday, September 16, 2021 at 1.30 p.m. by Governor Acharya Devvrat at the Raj Bhavan in Gandhinagar.

All Ministers are likely to be new as the BJP has reportedly decided to drop all who served in the Vijay Rupani administration.

Though there is no official word about what is being called the “no repeat theory” that the BJP leadership has decided to implement in Gujarat ahead of the next year’s Assembly election, party insiders said that no Minister of the previous administration would be retained in the new Cabinet.

The oath-taking was earlier slated to be held on Wednesday though no official message was issued in this regard, but due to protests and wrangling by senior leaders and others, it was abruptly cancelled.

Subsequently, the Chief Minister’s Office (CMO) tweeted that the swearing-in will take place on Thursday.

“The swearing-in ceremony of the new Cabinet of CM Shri Bhupendra Patel will take place tomorrow, September 16 at 1.30 p.m. at Raj Bhavan, Gandhinagar,” the CMO tweeted on Wednesday evening.

No statement either by the BJP leadership or from the CMO has come about the formation of the Cabinet but it has been learnt from well-placed sources that several former as well as senior Ministers are apparently unhappy as they suspect they will not be included as per the “no repeat theory”.

Late on Wednesday, supporters of former Minister Kuvarji Bavalia, a prominent OBC leader who has some influence in the Koli community in the Saurashtra region, circulated messages that if Mr. Bavalia did not find a place in the new Cabinet, the community would go against the party.

Similarly, murmurs of protests have emerged from north Gujarat, Saurashtra and even central Gujarat as senior Ministers who were part of the previous administrations of Narendra Modi, Anandiben Patel and Mr. Rupani are likely to be axed as the ruling party wants to face the Assembly polls with new faces.

The BJP has effected a change of guard in Gujarat with the 59-year-old first-time legislator Mr. Bhupendra Patel replacing Mr. Rupani on Monday.

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Printable version | Oct 17, 2021 3:38:08 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/new-gujarat-ministers-to-be-sworn-in-today/article36488582.ece

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