J&K Cabinet Revamped 

Srinagar—Chief minister Mehbooba Mufti on Monday assigned portfolios to the cabinet ministers and minister for state.

Kavinder Gupta (Deputy Chief Minister)   has been assigned Industries & Commerce and Transport; Abdul Rehman Veeri—Rural Development & Panchayati Raj; Ghulam Nabi Lone—Revenue; Syed Basharat Ahmad Bukhari—Horticulture, Law, Justice and Parliamentary Affairs; Chowdhary Zulfkar Ali            School Education, Haj and Auqaf and Tribal Affairs; Naeem Akhtar –Public Works and Culture; 

Imran Raza Ansari—Information   Technology,    Technical Education and Higher Education;

Syed Mohammad Altaf Bukhari—Finance,   Labour   and   Employment   and Floriculture—Javaid Mustafa Mir—Disaster  Management, Relief, Rehabilitation & Reconstruction; Mohammad Khalil Band          —Agriculture Production;  Sat Paul Sharma—Housing and Urban Development, Mohammad Ashraf Mir—Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs;  Sunil Kumar Sharma—Power Development

Rajiv Jasrotia—Forest, Ecology & Environment; Devinder Kumar Manyal— Health & Medical Education

Minister of State    

Zahoor Ahmad Mir—Forest,   Ecology and Environment,  Animal/Sheep Husbandry,  Cooperative, Fisheries, PHE/I&FC and Transport, Ajay Nanda—Food,  Civil  Supplies  &  Consumer  Affairs, Finance, Planning, Law & Justice, Relief & Rehabilitation,     Labour    &   Employment, Agriculture, Floriculture and Horticulture.

Shakti Raj—Education, Tourism, Tribal Affairs, Technical Education,  R&B,    Rural   Development, Information,    Youth   Services    &   Sports, Revenue and   Culture.

“All other Departments/subjects not assigned to any of the above Minister shall remain with the Chief Minister,” a government order said.

Nirmal Singh Is Speaker 

Nirmal Singh, who resigned from the post of Jammu and Kashmir deputy chief Minister, will be the new Speaker of the state Assembly, senior BJP leader Ram Madhav said today.

On a day eight ministers joined Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti’s council of ministers, Madhav said a reshuffle had been planned as the government had completed three years and it was felt more legislators should be given the experience of being in the state Cabinet.

“Dr Nirmal Singh ji will be the Speaker of Jammu and Kashmir Assembly,” Madhav said at a press conference here after the swearing-in ceremony of the newly inducted ministers.

Ahead of the Cabinet reshuffle, Singh had last night tendered his resignation to pave the way for state Assembly Speaker Kavinder Gupta to take over the post. The resignation was accepted by the governor.

With Singh now set to become the Assembly Speaker, the two senior BJP leaders have exchanged places during the reshuffle.

Eight MLAs including Gupta and state BJP chief Sat Paul Sharma were sworn in today by J&K Governor N N Vohra as ministers in the Mehbooba Mufti government.

“While Kavinder ji will lead the new team, Dr Singh will take charge of Assembly,” Madhav said.

He said the BJP-PDP government had completed almost three years. “We had planned a reshuffle at this time; we thought MLAs must get experience of being in the state Cabinet. It became bigger than expected as two of our ministers had to resign. Six ministers of BJP took oath today,” Madhav said.

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