Ten AAP MLAs, including a woman, were inducted as ministers in Bhagwant Mann’s Cabinet at Punjab Raj Bhawan in Chandigarh on Saturday
Punjab Governor Banwari Lal Purohit administered oath of office and secrecy to the new ministers at the swearing in ceremony in presence of Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann. Haryana governor Bandaru Dattareya was also present on this special occasion.
Those who were inducted as Punjab cabinet ministers include Harmap Singh Cheema MLA from Dirba, Dr Baljit Kaur (Malout), Harbhajan Singh ETO (Jandiala), Dr Vijay Singla (Mansa), Lal Chand Kataruchak (Bhoa), Gurmeet Singh Meet Hayer (Barnala), Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal (Ajnala), Laljit Singh Bhullar (Patti), Bram Shankar Jimpa (Hoshiarpur) and Harjot Singh Bains (Anandpur Sahib).
The portfolios to the newly inducted ministers would be allocated in the first cabinet meeting of Bhagwant Mann-led Punjab government at 2 pm.
Only one woman, and two two-time MLAs have been given berths in the new Punjab cabinet. Apart from Harpal Cheema and Meet Hayer, all others are new faces in the new government. The party has also given representation to three Hindu faces in the Mann Cabinet.
The AAP has dropped senior party leaders including Aman Arora, Prof Baljinder Kaur, and some other firebrand leaders of the AAP. Resentment was seen writ large on the faces of AAP MLAs, especially second timers, who could not find place in the first council of ministers.
Interestingly, the AAP has ignored senior MLAs who have been elected for the second time. Apprehending the Mann government could face trouble in coming days, the AAP has raised a cabinet of ‘yes men’ by ignoring some firebrands who had been cornering the previous Congress government in the state Assembly.
Those who defeated the stalwarts including former chief ministers Parkash Singh Badal, Capt Amarinder Singh, Rajinder Kaur Bhattal, Charanjit Singh Channi, Manpreet Singh Badal, Sukhbir Singh Badal, former Deputy Chief Minister, Navjot Singh Sidhu, Punjab Congress President, Bikram Singh Majithia and some others have been dropped in the first list of ministers.
The party has given more representation in the cabinet to MLAs from Malwa belt than Majha and Doaba. The state government could have seven more Cabinet ministers, besides the Chief Minister. However currently CM decided to stick with this Numbers
On Friday, Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann had made the announcement in this context on his Twitter account. Mann wrote: “Punjab’s new council of cabinet ministers will take oath tomorrow. Congratulations to all those getting berths in the state cabinet. The Punjab people have given us a big responsibility and we have to serve the public by working round-the-clock. Will give an honest government to Punjab. We have to make a ‘Rangla’ Punjab.” Mann had also posed a picture of a poster showing the names of his cabinet ministers.