NEW DELHI: Days after leading his party to a thumping victory in the 2019 polls, Narendra Modi took oath as the country's Prime Minister for a second consecutive term on Thursday. PM Modi, 68, was administered the oath of office and secrecy by President Ram Nath Kovind at a glittering ceremony at the forecourt of the majestic Rashtrapati Bhavan.
After PM Modi, several others, including BJP president Amit Shah, Rajnath Singh, Nitin Gadkari, Smriti Irani, former foreign secretary S Jaishankar, took oath as Cabinet ministers.
Apart from Shah, Singh, Gadkari, the other top leaders who were sworn-in as cabinet ministers included DV Sadananda Gowda, Nirmala Sitharaman and Ram Vilas Paswan.
While the inclusion of Shah, seen as BJP's key strategist who helped the party to expand its base after taking over the reins of the party in 2014, was much speculated, Jaishankar, considered close to PM Modi, was a surprise pick.
Some of the key ministers in the previous Modi government, including Sushma Swaraj, Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore and Maneka Gandhi were not part of the new Council of Ministers.
Former Finance Minister Arun Jaitley had written to PM Modi on Wednesday and said that he didn't want to be a part of the new government due to health reasons.
Top opposition leaders including former prime minister Manmohan Singh, Congress President Rahul Gandhi and UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, corporate honchos, film stars, chief ministers and a galaxy of leaders from BIMSTEC countries were part of the nearly 8,000 guests at the ceremony.
Others who took oath of office as cabinet ministers are - Narendra Singh Tomar, Ravi Shankar Prasad, Harsimrat Kaur Badal, Thanwar Chand Gehlot, Ramesh Pokhriyal, Arjun Munda, Dr Harsh Vardhan, Prakash Javadekar, Piyush Goyal, Dharmendra Pradhan, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, Prahlad Joshi, Mahendra Nath Pandey, Arvind Sawant, Giriraj Singh and Gajendra Shekhawat.
Those who took oath as Minister of State with Independent charge are - Santosh Kumar Gangwar, Rao Inderjit Singh, Shripad Yesso Naik, Jitendra Singh Kiren Rijiju, Prahalad Singh Patel, Raj Kumar Singh, Hardeep Singh Puri and Mansukh L Mandaviya.
Those who were sworn-in as Minister of State are - Faggan Singh Kulaste, Ashwini Kumar Choubey, Arjun Ram Meghwal, V K Singh, Krishan Pal, Danve Raosaheb Dadarao, G Kishan Reddy, Parshottam Rupala, Ramdas Athawale, Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti, Babul Supriyo, Sanjeev Kumar Balyan, Dhotre Sanjay Shamrao, Anurag Singh Thakur, Angadi Suresh Channabasappa, Nityanand Rai, Rattan Lal Kataria, V Muraleedharan, Renuka Singh Saruta, Som Parkash, Rameswar Teli, Pratap Chandra Sarangi, Kailash Choudhary, Debasree Chaudhuri.
There are 24 cabinet ministers and a total of 33 MoS out of which nine have been given independent charge.
Uttar Pradesh bagged the lion share of the ministerial berths with Prime Minister Narendra Modi himself leading the pack.
PM Modi won from Varanasi while Rajnath Singh, a senior minister who joined the prime minister's team as number two in the Union Cabinet, represents Lucknow in the Lok Sabha.
UP BJP chief Mahendra Nath Pandey, who was re-elected from Chandauli, also in eastern UP, joined PM Modi's team at the Centre as well. Smriti Irani who won from Amethi is also a part of Modi 2.0. While five of them are Cabinet ministers – PM Modi, Rajnath Singh, Smriti Irani, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and Mahendra Nath Pandey, MoS (independent charge) - Santosh Gangwar, other MoS - Gen (retd) V K Singh, Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti and Sanjeev Balyan.
With the defeat of two ministers, in the Lok Sabha elections, two fresh faces from Maharashtra - Arvind Sawant from the Shiv Sena and Sanjay Dhotre from the BJP - found a place in the Narendra Modi government on Thursday.
The ministers from Maharashtra who took oath Thursday included Nitin Gadkari, Piyush Goyal and Prakash Javadekar (all three cabinet ministers in the first term), followed by RPI (A) leader Ramdas Athawale and Arvind Sawant, the sole Sena minister. BJP's Raosaheb Danve and Sanjay Dhotre were also inducted. V Muraleedharan, who hails from Kerala but who was elected to the Rajya Sabha from Maharashtra.
With none from Andhra Pradesh was included in the new union council of ministers led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, the state does not have a representative in the central government perhaps for the first time.
State-wise representation in Narendra Modi Cabinet
Arunachal Pradesh: 1
West Bengal: 2