Punjab Cabinet Expansion: 15 ministers inducted in Charanjit Channi's cabinet, 6 new faces
New Delhi, Sep 26: Punjab's new Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi on Sunday inducted 15 members for his new cabinet, six of them completely new.
The names of 15 new ministers include Brahm Mohindra, Manpreet Singh Badal, Tript Rajinder Singh Bajwa, Sukhbindr Singh Sarkaria, Rana Gurjeet Singh, Aruna Chaudary, Razia Sultana, Bharat Bhushan Ashu, Vijay Inder Singla, Randeep Singh Nabha, Raj Kumar Verka, Sangat Singh Gilzian, Pargat Singh, Amarinder Singh Raja Warring, Gukrirat Singh Kotli. Nabha, Verka, Gilzian, Pargat Singh, Warring, and Kotli.
The new faces in the Channi Ministry are Randeep Singh Nabha, Raj Kumar Verka, Sangat Singh Gilzian, Pargat Singh, Amarinder Singh Raja Warring and Gurkirat Singh Kotli.
The MLAs were administered the oath of the office as cabinet ministers by Governor Banwarilal Purohit at Raj Bhavan in Chandigarh.
Channi had taken oath as the chief minister following the unceremonious exit of Congress veteran Amarinder Singh after a prolonged power tussle with state Congress chief Navjot Singh Sidhu.
Rana Gurjit Singh, Mohindra and Singla are considered close to Amarinder Singh. A total of 18 MLAs, including the chief minister, can be included in the cabinet. Channi''s two deputies Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa and OP Soni were sworn in on Monday.
Earlier, a section of Congress leaders from the state had written to the party''s Punjab unit chief Sidhu against the induction of former minister Rana Gurjit Singh, alleging he was "corrupt and tainted". The leaders had also demanded that the cabinet berth may instead be filled up "by giving representation to a clean Dalit leader".
A copy of the letter was also sent to the chief minister.
Rana Gurjit Singh, after facing flak from the Opposition over allegations of impropriety in the auction of sand mining contracts, had to resign from the previous Amarinder Singh cabinet in 2018. At that time, he had held Irrigation and Power portfolios.