Chief minister assigns 8-10 berths to each minister; sources say it’s an interim arrangement.
Mumbai: With just three days left for the start of the winter session of the state legislature, the Uddhav Thackeray-led Maharashtra Vikas Aghadi (MVA) government finally announced the allocation of portfolios among its six Cabinet ministers on Thursday.
Mr Thackeray, along with six ministers — two each from Shiv Sena, Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) and Congress — had taken the oath of office on November 28. However, even two weeks after the oath ceremony, portfolios had not been allocated due to which proceedings in Mantralaya came to a standstill.
Mr Thackeray on Thursday assigned eight to ten portfolios to each minister but has not kept any specific department with himself. He will take charge of the departments not allocated to any minister. According to sources, the allocation is an interim arrangement keeping in mind the winter session, which starts on Monday.
A senior NCP leader indicated that portfolios might change after the Cabinet expansion, which is likely to take place after the end of the session, on December 21.
According to earlier reports, the home department was likely to go to the NCP, but the Sena succeeded in bagging the important portfolio. Which has been given to Eknath Shinde. Among the other significant departments, the finance berth has been given to NCP’s Jayant Patil, whereas revenue has been allotted to Balasaheb Thorat of the Congress.
A statement from the CM’s office said that apart from the home ministry, Mr Shinde has been given the charge of the urban development, forest, environment, water supply, water conservation, tourism, public undertakings and parliamentary affairs departments.
The other Sena minister, Subhash Desai, has been given the charge of industries, higher and technical education, sports and youth welfare, horticulture, transport, Marathi language and cultural affairs and ports departments.
Apart from finance, Mr Patil has been allocated the planning and housing, among other departments. public health, co-operation, food & civil supplies, labour and minority welfare departments.
Chhagan Bhujbal, another NCP minister, has been given the irrigation, rural development, social justice, excise, skill development and the food and drug administration departments.
Apart from revenue, Mr Thorat has been given the energy, medical education, school education, animal husbandry and dairy development and fisheries departments.
Congress’s Nitin Raut has been given the public works, tribal welfare, women and child welfare, textile, relief and rehabilitation, OBC, VJNT and special backward class welfare departments.