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New Delhi : Nirmala Sitharaman, who was on September 3, 2017, elevated to cabinet minister rank, has been given the Defence portfolio. She is second woman to hold the Defence portfolio after former PM Indira Gandhi. She was Minister of State ( Independent charege) for Commerce before her elevation to cabinet rank. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley was holding additional charge of Defence Ministry after Manohar Parikar went back to Goa as the chief minister of the state.
Piyush Goyal, son of former Union Minister Ved Prakash Goel, who wasalso promoted to cabinet rank, has been given the portfolios of Railways and Coal. He has replaced Suresh Prabhu as the Railways Minister. Prabhu, who had offered to quit from his post after recent railway accidents, gets the portfolios Commerce and Industry ministries.
Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, another Minister of State promoted to cabinet rank, has been given charge of Minority Affairs Ministry. Dharmendra Pradhan, who too has been promoted to cabinet rank, has been given the portfolios of Petroleum and Natural Gas and Skill Development and Entrepreneurship. Uma Bharti, who was holding the portfolio of Water Resources Ministry, has been given the charge of Drinking Water and Sanitation. Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has also been given charge of Corporate Affairs.
Giriraj Singh, BJP MP from Nawada, Bihar, and Minister of State for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, too has gained in stature as he has been given Independent charge of the same ministry. He is among the 11 Ministers of State with Independent Charge. Ara BJP MP and former Union Home Secretary Raj Kumar Singh, who was inducted into the Union Cabinet as Minister of State on September 3, has also been given Independent Charge of Ministry of Power and Ministry of New and Renewable Energy. It is a big jump for him as he is serving his first term in Lok Sabha.
Alphons Kannanthanam, a retired IAS officer who was appointed Minister of State, has been given Independent Charge of Ministries of Tourism and Electronics and Information Technology. Hardeep Singh Puri, a retired Indian Forest Service (IFS) officer who was inducted into Union Cabinet as Minister of State, has been given Independent Charge of the Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs.
BJP MP from Buxar Ashwini Kumar Choubey, who too was inducted into the Union Cabinet as Minister of State, has been the portfolio of Health and Family Welfare. He was Cabinet Minister in Bihar for 8 years in the NDA governmnt headed by Nitish Kumar. A five term MLA from Bhagalpur, Choubey is serving his first term in Lok Sabha.
BJP MP from Baghpat and former Mumbai police commissioner Satyapal Singh, who was also inducted in the Union Cabinet as Minister of State, has been given the portfolios of HRD, Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation.
Shiv Pratap Shukla, a Rajya Sabha member who was appointed Minister of State, has given the portfolio of Finance. Dr. Virendra Kumar has been made Minister of State for Women and Child Development and Minority Affairs. Anantkumar Hegde, BJP MP from Karnataka who was also appointed Minister of State, has been the portfolio of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship. The number of Minister of State is now 37 in Narendra Modi government.