Rejigged Odisha cabinet to take oath today, at least 6 new faces expected
A new cabinet is ready to be sworn in in Odisha on Sunday, a day after all 20 ministers of the Naveen Patnaik-helmed government resigned to pave the way for a reshuffle.
This is the first time in the political history of Odisha that the entire cabinet was asked to resign. The directive was given by Patnaik, also the party supremo of ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD) to refurbish his cabinet of ministers ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha and Assembly elections.
Sources say at least six of the 20 ministers will be replaced by new faces and there will be a reshuffle of portfolios among the rest.
Patnaik had also ordered the dissolution of offices of advisors and chairpersons of around 23 departments, corporations and boards on Saturday.
Reports say, 13 MLAs will be given ministerial portfolios while eight will be made ministers of state.
Governor Prof Ganeshi Lal has been informed about the oath-taking ceremony which will be held on Sunday at the state secretariat, the Lok Seva Bhavan.
The new ministers will take the oath of office at 11.45 am at a function to be held at the Convention Centre on the premises of the Lok Seva Bhavan on Sunday, a highly placed source in the Raj Bhavan told PTI.
Sources said that all ministers have submitted their resignation letters to Patnaik within 7 pm, following which some of the would-be ministers received phone calls to remain prepared for the oath-taking ceremony on Sunday.
Most of the phone calls were made from Naveen Niwas, the residence of the chief minister.
The reshuffle comes days after Patnaik completed three years in office in his fifth consecutive term as the Chief Minister of Odisha on May 29.
The ministry reshuffle process needs to be completed by Monday as the governor is scheduled to go outside Odisha after two days.
CM Patnaik is also scheduled to visit Rome and Dubai from June 20 and he wants to revamp the ministry before his departure, sources in the Chief Minister’s Office said.
The ministry reshuffle exercise began a day after the ruling BJD won three Rajya Sabha seats and the by-poll in the Brajrajnagar assembly constituency.