South Gujarat scores big in Patel ministry

Newly sworn-in ministers pose for photograph with Gujarat Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel and Gujarat Governor Acharya Devvrat, during the swearing-in ceremony, in Gandhinagar on Thursday. ANI

From the day C.R. Patil became the state president, it was decided that the representation of the South would increase. Earlier, there were only 4 ministers from South Gujarat in Rupani’s cabinet, now there are 7 ministers from the region in Bhupendra Patel’s cabinet.

In Bhupendra Patel’s government, the issue of cabinet formation has finally been resolved. A total of 10 cabinet-level and 14 state-level ministers of the Patel government were sworn in at the Gandhinagar Raj Bhavan on Thursday. However, this time the composition of the cabinet has seen the number of 7 members from South Gujarat. This clearly shows that the state president C. R. Patil has dominated the composition of the cabinet.

If we look at zone wise this time, it can be said that South Gujarat has got a regular lottery. From the day C. R. Patil became the state president, it was decided that the representation of the South would increase in the next cabinet expansion. Earlier, there were only 4 ministers from South Gujarat in Vijay Rupani’s cabinet, but now there are 7 ministers from South Gujarat in Bhupendra Patel’s cabinet. While 7 ministers, each from Saurashtra-Kutch and Central Gujarat, and 3 ministers from North Gujarat are included in the new cabinet.

The allocation of ministers in Bhupendra Patel’s cabinet has also been balanced zone-wise. South Gujarat got 7 ministers, while Saurashtra-Kutch and Central Gujarat also got 7 ministers each. The BJP government has only 24 MLAs from the South, 43 from Central Gujarat and 32 from Saurashtra-Kutch. However, Central Gujarat has less representation in the cabinet than most MLAs.

Speaking of North Gujarat, the number of ministers from North Gujarat in the current cabinet has increased to three. North Gujarat has got 1 more minister this time as compared to the previous Rupani cabinet. Of course, in the last elections in North Gujarat, the BJP was declared victorious and won only 14 out of 32 seats. With this in mind, this time the number of North Gujarat members in the new Chief Minister’s cabinet was expected to increase to more than five and there would be a surge of enthusiasm among local activists.

Bhupendra Patel’s cabinet consists of 3 MLAs from South Gujarat— Purnesh Modi (Surat West), Kanubhai Desai (Pardi-Valsad) and Naresh Patel (Gandevi – Navsari). Among the state ministers are Harsh Sanghvi (Majura-Surat), Jitu Chaudhary (Kaprada-Valsad), Mukesh Patel (Olpad-Surat) and Vinod Mordia (Katargam-Surat) from South Gujarat. Thus, South Gujarat has got more representation in the new cabinet with less MLAs.

Gujarat’s new cabinet includes two women ministers. Among the 25 ministers, including Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel, Vadodara MLA Manisha Vakil was sworn in as an independent minister of state and Morwa Hadaf MLA Nimisha Suthar was sworn in as a Minister of State. Both the ministers in the new cabinet of the state have youth, engineering and master’s degrees. Thus having a younger and more educational qualification. Vibhavariben Dave was the only woman minister in the Vijay Rupani government while the newly appointed Bhupendra Patel’s cabinet consisted of two women ministers.

In the new cabinet, all the old leaders have been ousted, in a situation where Vibhavariben Dave, the former women minister in the Rupani government, was the minister for women and education.