After flexing his muscle over economic reforms, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Sunday built a new cabinet retaining his core group but combining youth with experience to lead the scam-tainted United Progressive Alliance (UPA) with some fresh energy for the 2014 general elections.
The major reshuffle was effected with the swearing in of 22 new ministers, including many among the existing ministers who were either promoted to cabinet ranks or given independent charge.
The PM also sent a loud message to the civil society activists like Arvind Kejriwal targetting his ministers and leaders over scams, by elevating Salman Khurshid, battling a NGO fund misappropriation charge, as the new external affairs minister. New cabinet rank minority affairs minister K Rahman Khan is also accused of involvement in a Waqf Board scam in Karnataka.
The message to Trinamool Congress chief Mamata Banerjee, who walked out of UPA over economic reforms, was also clear with the induction of three of her major critics from West Bengal, especially Deepa Dasmunsi and Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, as ministers, though with junior ranks.
While Salman Khurshid moved from law to external affairs, M. Veerappa Moily became the Petroleum & Natural Gas Minister leaving the earlier portfolio of law to Ashwani Kumar. Formerly the parliamentary affairs minister, Pawan Kumar Bansal got Railways.
But the PM rued that Congress general secretary Rahul Gandhi could not be brought in as the latter wanted to still concentrate on party affairs.
The PM said his new cabinet is a mixture of youth and experience but he was sad that Rahul Gandhi again refused to be a minister.
He hoped that this is the last major reshuffle before 2014 general elections.
President of India Pranab Mukherjee administered the oath of secrecy and office to the new ministers at Rashtrapathi Bhavan.
The cabinet rank ministers who took oath are K Rahman Khan, Dinsha Patel, Ajay Maken, Pallam Raju, Ashwini Kumar, Harish Rawat and Chandresh Kumari Katoch.
Ashwini Kumar is the new law minister of India while K Rahman Khan would be holding minority affairs portfolio.
The two ministers of state with independent charge sworn in are Manish Tewari, who was the Congress spokesperson, and Telugu actor turned politician K Chiranjeevi. While the former became Information and Broadcasting Minister, the latter is the new tourism minister of India.
The ministers of state who were inducted in the government are Shashi Tharoor, Kodi Kunil Suresh, Tariq Anwar (NCP), K Jayasurya Prakash Reddy, Rani Nara, Adhir Ranjan Chowdhry, A H Khan Chowdhry, S Satyanarayana, Ninong Ering, Deepa Dasmunsi, Porika Balram Naik, Dr Smt Krupa Ravi Killi and Lalchand Kataria.
A total of 17 new faces would be seen in the new ministry while Andhra Pradesh got maximum representation with six chosen from the state roiled by the demand for a separate Telangana state.
Deepa Dasmunshi and Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, who are from West Bengal, are two leaders from the state staunchly opposed to Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee whose Trinamool Congress walked out of the UPA over economic reforms like FDI in multi-brand retail.
A H Khan Chowdhury is another West Bengal leader (from Malda) who was sworn in. He is the brother of late railway minister ABA Ghani Khan.
In Khurshid, India would see a new external affairs minister after SM Krishna stepped down to make way for a younger leader.
The United Progressive Alliance (UPA) will see a younger cabinet as several of the ministers sworn in or elevated on Sunday are young leaders of Congress.
Jyotiraditya Madhavrao Scindia has been elevated as the Power Minister with independent charge while Sachin Pilot got Corporate Affairs with independent charge.
Kapil Sibal, who was holding now both the Human Resource Development and Telecom ministries, kept only telecom.
Earlier on Saturday, Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika Soni, Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Mukul Wasnik, Tourism Minister Subodh Kant Sahay and Minister of State Justice and Empowerment Mahadev Khandela met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and submitted their resignations.
Meanwhile, social activist turned politician Arvind Kejriwal called the cabinet reshuffle a game of musical chair to maintain power balance.
"Salman Khurshid was made foreign minister but no one knows why. Is it because he failed as a law minister or because he did well? So it is musical chair game.
"The entire exercise is about keeping one´s side weighty with their people and it is the internal politics of Congress and UPA," said Kejriwal speaking to reporters.
He said the country would get nothing from the reshuffle.
He said though lot is being said about infusing youth, the question is whether these young faces have done anything worthwhile so far to boast of.
NEW CABINET MINISTERS WITH THEIR PORTFOLIOS
1. K. Rahman Khan, Minority Affairs
2. Dinsha J. Patel, Mines
3. Ajay Maken, Housing & Urban Poverty Alleviation
4. M.M. Pallam Raju, Human Resource Development
5. Ashwani Kumar, Law & Justice
6. Harish Rawat, Water Resources
7. Chandresh Kumari Katoch, Culture
NEW MINISTERS OF STATE (INDEPENDENT CHARGE) WITH THEIR PORTFOLIOS
1. Manish Tewari, Inforamtion and Broadcasting
2. K. Chiranjeevi, Tourism
NEW MINISTERS OF STATE WITH THEIR PORTFOLIOS
1. Shashi Tharoor, Human Resource Development
2. Kodikunnil Suresh, Labour & Employment
3. Tariq Anwar (NCP), Agriculture & Food Processing Industries
4. Kotla Jaya Surya Prakash Reddy, Railways
5. Ranee Narah, Tribal Affairs
6. Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury, Railways
7. A.H. Khan Choudhury, Health & Family Welfare
8. Sarvey Sathyanarayana, Road Transport & Highways
9. Ninong Ering, Minority Affairs
10. Deepa Dasmunsi, Urban Development
11. Porika Balram Naik, Social Justice & Empowerment
12. Kruparani Killi, Communications & Information Technology
13. Lalchand Kataria, Defence
CABINET MINISTERS WITH CHANGED PORTFOLIOS:
1. M. Veerappa Moily, Petroleum & Natural Gas
2. S. Jaipal Reddy, Science & Technology and Earth Sciences
3. Kamal Nath, Urban Development & Parliamentary Affairs
4. Vayalar Ravi, Overseas Indian Affairs
5. Kapil Sibal, Communications & Information Technology
6. C.P. Joshi, Road Transport & Highways
7. Kumari Selja, Social Justice & Empowerment
8. Pawan Kumar Bansal, Railways
9. Salman Khursheed, External Affairs
10. Jairam Ramesh, Rural Development
MINISTERS OF STATE (INDEPENDENT CHARGE)
1. Jyotiraditya Madhavrao Scindia, Power
2. K.H. Muniappa, Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises
3. Bharatsinh Madhavsinh Solanki, Drinking Water & Sanitation
4. Sachin Pilot, Corporate Affairs
5. Jitendra Singh, Youth Affairs & Sports
MINISTERS OF STATE
1. E. Ahamed, External Affairs
2. D. Purandeswari, Commerce & Industry
3. Jitin Prasada, Defence & Human Resource Development
4. Dr. S. Jagathrakshakan, New & Renewable Energy
5. R.P.N. Singh, Home
6. K.C. Venugopal, Civil Aviation
7. Rajeev Shukla, Parliamentary Affairs & Planning.
THE COMPLETE LIST OF MINISTERS
Manmohan Singh: Prime Minister, Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions, Ministry of Planning, Department of Atomic Energy, Department of Space
P Chidambaram: Finance
Sharad Pawar: Agriculture Minister, Minister of Food Processing Industries
AK Antony: Defence
Sushil Kumar Shinde: Minister of Home Affairs
K Rahman Khan: Minority Affairs
Dinsha Patel: Mines
Ajay Maken: Housing & Urban Poverty Alleviation
MM Pallam Raju: Human Resource Development
Ashwani Kumar: Law & Justice
Harish Rawat: Water Resources
Chandresh Kumari Katoch: Culture
M Veerappa Moily: Petroleum & Natural Gas
S Jaipal Reddy: Science & Technology and Earth Sciences
Kamal Nath: Urban Development & Parliamentary Affairs
Vayalar Ravi: Overseas Indian Affairs
Kapil Sibal: Communications & Information Technology
CP Joshi: Road Transport & Highways
Kumari Selja: Social Justice & Empowerment
Pawan Kumar Bansal: Railways
Salman Khurshid: External Affairs
Jairam Ramesh: Rural Development
Ghulam Nabi Azad: Minister of Health and Family Welfare
Dr. Farooq Abdullah: Minister of New and Renewable Energy
Ajit Singh: Civil Aviation
Mallikarjun Kharge: Minister of Labour and Employment
Kapil Sibal: Minister of Communications and Information Technology
Anand Sharma: Minister of Commerce and Industry, Minister of Textiles
GK Vasan: Shipping
MK Alagiri: Minister of Chemicals and Fertilizers
Praful Manoharbhai Patel: Minister of Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises
Sriprakash Jaiswal: Minister of Coal
V Kishore Chandra Deo: Minister of Tribal Affairs, Minister of Panchayati Raj
Beni Prasad Verma: Minister of Steel
Ministers of State (Independent Charge)
Manish Tewari: Information & Broadcasting
K Chiranjeevi: Tourism
Jyotiraditya Madhavrao Scindia: Power
KH Muniyappa: Micro, Small & Medium Enterprises
Bharatsinh Madhavsinh Solanki: Drinking Water & Sanitation
Sachin Pilot: Corporate Affairs
Jitendra Singh: Youth Affairs & Sports
Krishna Tirath: Ministry of Women and Child Development
Kuruppassery Varkey Thomas: Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution
Srikant Kumar Jena: Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation
Jayanthi Natarajan: Ministry of Environment and Forests
Paban Singh Ghatowar: Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region, Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs
Ministers of State
Shashi Tharoor: Human Resource Development
Kodikunnil Suresh: Labour & Employment
Tariq Anwar: Agriculture & Food Processing Industries
KJ Surya Prakash Reddy: Railways
Ranee Narah: Tribal Affairs
Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury: Railways
AH Khan Choudhury: Health & Family Welfare
Sarvey Sathyanarayana: Road Transport & Highways
Ninong Ering: Minority Affairs
Deepa Dasmunsi: Urban Development
Porika Balram Naik: Social Justice & Empowerment
Dr (Smt) Kruparani Killi: Communications & Information Technology
Lalchand Kataria: Defence
E Ahamed: External Affairs
D Purandeswari: Commerce & Industry
Jitin Prasada: Defence & Human Resource Development
Dr S Jagathrakshakan: New & Renewable Energy
RPN Singh: Home
KC Venugopal: Civil Aviation
Rajeev Shukla: Parliamentary Affairs & Planning
V Narayanasamy: Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions, Prime Minister Office
Lakshmi Panabaka: Ministry of Textiles
Namo Narain Meena: Ministry of Finance
SS Palanimanickam: Ministry of Finance
Preneet Kaur: Ministry of External Affairs
D Napoleon: Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment
S Gandhiselvan: Ministry of Health and Family Welfare
Tushar Amarsinh Chaudhary: Ministry of Road Transport and Highways
Pratik Prakashbapu Patil: Ministry of Coal
Ratanjit Pratap Narain Singh: Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Ministry of Corporate Affairs
Pradeep Kumar Jain Aditya: Ministry of Rural Development
Charan Das Mahant: Ministry of Agriculture and Ministry of Food Processing Industries, Ministry of Food Processing Industries
Milind Murli Deora: Ministry of Communications and Information Technology