Moment to remember

Moment to remember

Grand event:

Narendra Modi became the first prime minister to take oath in the evening on the forecourt of the majestic Rashtrapati Bhavan. As the sun set behind Raisina Hills, the lights accentuated the grandeur of the magnificent red sandstone building.

God fearing:

Modi’s 45-member council of ministers appears to be the most God-fearing one. All the ministers, including the prime minister himself, took the oath of office and secrecy in the name of God. All the ministers hailing from the southern states, except Ananth Kumar, took their oaths in English. Kumar took the oath in Hindi.

Jittery leaders:

The excitement of being sworn in as a Cabinet minister could have caused some jitters for TDP MP Ashok Gajapati Raju. He forgot to say his name while being administered the oath of office. An alert President Pranab Mukherjee had to direct him to say his name and take the oath afresh. Juel Oram, a BJP MP from Odisha, also forgot his name.

Engaging neighbours:

Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif was seated in between former prime minister Manmohan Singh and his wife Gursharan Kaur. Sharif and Singh were seen engaged in a long chat before the ceremony began.

No dearth of zeal:

The Press Information Bureau (PIB) went into overdrive inviting journalists to cover the swearing-in of the new parliamentary affairs minister even before the Cabinet portfolios were formally announced. A PIB official said they expected either M Venkaiah Naidu or Ananth Kumar to be assigned the portfolio, and just wanted to ensure media presence in case the minister decided to take charge on Tuesday.

Sangh presence:

The Sangh Parivar’s presence was felt at the ceremony, attended by RSS joint general secretary Dattatreya Hosbale, and members Madan Das Devi, Sadhvi Ritambhara and Ashok Singhal. After all, a former RSS pracharak had risen to become prime minister.

Cong attendees:

The Congress was represented in strong numbers at Modi’s swearing-in ceremony. Congress president Sonia Gandhi was seated in the first row, while vice-president Rahul Gandhi was seen in the second row. Former UPA ministers P Chidambaram, Jairam Ramesh, Sharad Pawar, Pallam Raju and Praful Patel were also present.
 
Seeking BSY’s blessings :

Sadananda Gowda took the blessings of former Karnataka chief minister B S Yeddyurappa by touching his feet before going to Rashtrapati Bhavan to take oath as Cabinet minister. When Yeddyurappa, staying in the room next to Gowda’s in Karnataka Bhavan, came to wish him, Gowda touched the feet of the Lingayat leader. Gowda’s wife, son and his brother attended the ceremony.

Corporate strength:

The corporate sector was well represented at the ceremony, with Mukesh and Anil Ambani marking their presence with their families. Also present were the Ruias of the Essar Group, Gautam Adani of the Adani Group, and Rajan and Sunil Mittal of Bharti Enterprises. Among the notable absentees were Ratan Tata and Cyrus Mistry of the Tata Group.

Allies add to numbers:

Among the NDA allies, Shiv Sena president Uddhav Thackeray was seen seated next to BJP general secretary Amit Shah. Akali Dal chief Parkash Singh Badal, TDP chief Chandrababu Naidu and PMK leader Anbumani Ramadoss were also present.

Tinsel-town turnout:

Actors Salman Khan, Vivek Oberoi and Dharmendra and scriptwriters Salim Khan and Javed Akhtar added a little movie magic to the nearly-90-minute ceremony.Cricketing great Sunil Gavaskar was also present.

Guests galore:

Vice-President Hamid Ansari, senior BJP leaders L K Advani and Murli Manohar Joshi, former Lok Sabha speaker Meira Kumar, and former presidents APJ Abdul Kalam and Pratibha Patil were among those who attended the ceremony.

Rivalries forgotten:

Differences during the elections melted away before protocol as opponents, including Mulayam Singh Yadav, his son and UP Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, Jammu and Kashmir Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, Bihar Chief Minister Jitan Ram Manjhi, Assam Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda attended the ceremony.

Religious heads from State:

Three religious head from Karnataka Sri Sri Ravi Shankar of Art of Living, Vishvesha Tirtha Swamiji of Pejavar Math, and Nirmalanandanatha Swamiji of Adhichunchanagiri attended the swearing-in ceremony.

Gujarati greetings:

“Kem cho, Majama”, the Gujarati way of greeting and reciprocation, was heard at Rashtrapati Bhavan's forecourt where Narendra Modi was sworn-in as prime minister. As guests and mediapersons braved the heat in front of “Jaipur Column” of the forecourt, BJP leader and now Cabinet minister Ravi Shankar Prasad arrived at the media enclosure and greeted the journalists in Gujarati. ”Kem cho, Majama” means “How are you, fine”.

Industrialist Mukesh Ambani and wife Nita at the swearing-in ceremony.

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