Haryana CM Nayab Saini inducts 8 ministers, 7 of them new faces

Senior BJP leader Anil Vij didn’t find place in cabinet

Haryana Chief Minister Nayab Singh Saini | PTI Haryana Chief Minister Nayab Singh Saini | PTI

Haryana Chief Minister Nayab Singh Saini carried out his first cabinet expansion on Wednesday by inducting eight ministers—seven of them fresh faces. 

Senior BJP leader and former home minister Anil Vij has not been inducted into the ministry yet. Any of the six independent MLAs, who have supported the Saini government, has also not found place in the cabinet.

BJP MLA from Hisar Kamal Gupta was sworn in as the cabinet minister while remaining seven MLAs—Badkhal MLA Seema Trikha, Panipat Rural MLA Mahipal Dhanda, Ambala City MLA Aseem Goel, Nangal Chaudhary MLA Abhe Singh Yadav, Thanesar MLA Subhash Sudha, Bawani Khera MLA Bishamber Singh Balmiki, and Sohna MLA Sanjay Singh—took oath as ministers of state (independent charge). Trikha is the lone woman in the council of ministers.

Former chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar was present at the swearing-in ceremony. In a surprise move last week, the BJP replaced Khattar with OBC leader Saini and fielded the former chief minister from Karnal constituency for the Lok Sabha elections.

With the induction of new ministers, the strength of the cabinet rose to 14.

Saini and five MLAs—four from the BJP and one independent—took oath on March 12 hours after Khattar submitted his resignation. Those who were sworn in with Saini were BJP's Kanwar Pal, Mool Chand Sharma, Jai Prakash Dalal and Banwari Lal and Independent MLA Ranjit Singh Chautala. All the five were ministers in the outgoing Khattar cabinet.

The new government won the trust vote in a special session of the state assembly last Wednesday.

Vij has apparently been upset with the party not keeping him in the loop when they decided to make Saini the chief minister by removing Khattar. He said he came to know about it only in the BJP MLAs' meeting here last week in which Saini's name was announced.

"It was not in my knowledge that the chief minister of our state was being changed. This came as a bombshell to me that the chief minister was being changed," Vij told reporters here earlier.


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