Naveen begins fourth innings as CM

Naveen begins fourth innings as CM

21 colleagues, including 11 cabinet ministers, also take oath in Odisha

Naveen begins fourth innings as CM

Biju Janata Dal (BJD) president Naveen Patnaik was sworn in on Wednesday as the chief minister of Odisha for a fourth consecutive term. 

Along with him, a 21 member council of ministers took the oath of office and secrecy. They include 11 cabinet ministers and 10 ministers of state. The swearing-in-ceremony was held at the Raj Bhavan here.

Pradip Kumar Amat, the Speaker of the last Assembly, has been included as a cabinet minister. He was a minister of state during Patnaik’s second term as chief minister between 2004 and 2009. 

Similarly, Pushpendra Singhdeo, who was a minister of state in the last BJD government, has been elevated to the cabinet rank. Also, six cabinet ministers from the previous government have been reinstated. 

Senior BJD leader Pradip Maharathi, who has been included in the cabinet, was also a member of the last cabinet but had to resign mid-way following a controversy over allegations of rape and murder of a young girl in his Assembly constituency of Pipli. 

There are eight new faces in the council of ministers, including Jogendra Behera, Sudam Marandi and Sanjay Das Burma. Behera, an MLA from Bolangir district, has been given the cabinet rank. 

Marandi, former president of the Jharkhand Mukti Morcha’s Odisha unit, and Burma, BJD deputy chief whip in the last Assembly, have been given minister of state rank.

Prominent BJD leaders who were members of the last cabinet but have been dropped this time despite their good performance in the  Assembly polls include Surya Narayan Patra, who successfully led the rescue and relief operations during cyclone Phailin.

By occupying the chief minister’s chair for the fourth consecutive term, Patnaik has broken his own record. He set a new record in the state in 2009 by taking over as chief minister for the third consecutive term. 

In the just concluded Assembly polls, Patnaik-led BJD romped home by capturing 117 out of 147 seats.

Get a round-up of the day's top stories in your inbox

Check out all newsletters

Get a round-up of the day's top stories in your inbox