In a major Cabinet reshuffle on Monday, ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, Smriti Irani has been removed from the Information and Broadcasting Ministry and Minister of State, I&B, Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore will take over as independent in-charge of the ministry.
Also, Union Railway Minister Piyush Goyal will be taking over the additional position of the Finance Ministry, which had been with Arun Jaitley from 2014.
Jaitley has been suffering from a kidney illness and underwent a successful kidney transplant at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) in New Delhi on Monday.
Goyal will be handling the Finance portfolio until Jaitley recovers, as per the release.
“The President of India, as advised by the Prime Minister, has directed the following reallocation of portfolios amongst the members of the Union Council of Ministers,” the Rashtrapati Bhavan said in a statement.
Piyush Goyal given additional charge of Finance Ministry till Arun Jaitley recovers, Rajyavardhan Rathore new Information & Broadcasting Minister. pic.twitter.com/Rv1HH7cJiN— ANI (@ANI) May 14, 2018
SS Ahluwalia assigned the portfolio of MoS in Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology, relieved of his charges of MoS in Ministry of Drinking Water & Sanitation. Alphons Kannanthanam relieved of charge of MoS in Ministry of Electrionics and Information Technology. pic.twitter.com/PqI5ovpemw— ANI (@ANI) May 14, 2018
As per a press communiqué from the President’s Secretariat, the President of India, directed the reshuffle among the members of the Union Council of Ministers. Irani will now head the Textile Ministry. This is the second time that she has been removed from her ministry position.
Earlier, she was replaced by Prakash Javadekar as the HRD Minister.In another major reshuffle, KJ Alphons, a Minister of State in the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, will now head the Tourism Ministry. SS Ahluwalia will head the Electronics Ministry.
This is the fifth reshuffle in the ministry since the BJP came to power in May 2014. The cabinet witnessed induction of new ministers in November 2014, July 2016 and September 2017, while in July 2017, there were lateral shifts in council of ministers.