Dehradun, March 18 (IANS) Long-time Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) activist Trivendra Singh Rawat was on Saturday sworn in as the new Uttarakhand Chief Minister.
He was administered the oath of office by Governor Krishna Kant Paul along with nine ministers — seven of Cabinet rank and two Ministers of State.
The Cabinet Ministers are Satpal Maharaj, Madan Kaushik, Yashpal Arya, Harak Singh Rawat, Prakash Pant, Subodh Uniyal and Praveen Pandey.
Dhan Singh Rawat and Rekha Arya are Ministers of State.
The majority of Cabinet members are leaders who moved from the Congress to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
While Harak Singh Rawat, Yashpal Arya, Subodh Uniyal and Rekha Arya joined the BJP before this year’s assembly elections, Satpal Maharaj joined the party in 2014.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP President Amit Shah and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh attended the oath-taking ceremony of Trivendra Singh Rawat, who becomes the ninth Chief Minister of the hill state carved out of Uttar Pradesh in 2000.
A former associate of Modi, Trivendra Singh Rawat was Agriculture Minister in the previous BJP government in Uttarakhand.
Elected from Doiwala seat by an over 24,000 vote margin against Congress rival Hira Singh Bisht, the new Chief Minister is widely regarded in the party for his organisational skills.
The fifth BJP Chief Minister in the state, he is also known as a ‘pracharak’ (campaigner) in the RSS.
The party formed its first government in the state in 2000 when Nityanand Swami was the first Chief Minister.
The BJP won a landslide majority in the Uttarakhand assembly elections, winning 57 of the 70 seats. The Congress got 11.