Centre appoints 5 new guvs
The row over UPA appointee governors seems to be settling down with Narendra Modi-led NDA government on Monday have appointed five new governors for Gujarat, Uttar Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, West Bengal and Nagaland.
Soon after BJP came to power, there was pressure from the union home ministry to some of the UPA appointee governors to step down on the ground that they were politically appointed. Situation turned bitter and a section of them stepped down after being annoyed with the ‘witch hunting’.
Those who were appointed on Monday as new governors are: Ram Naik for Uttar Pradesh, Balramji Dass Tandon for Chhattisgarh, Keshari Nath Tripathi for West Bengal, Om Prakash Kohli for Gujarat and Padmanabha Balakrishna Acharya as governor of Nagaland.
The President has also appointed Acharya to discharge the functions of the governor of Tripura, in addition to his own duties, until regular arrangements for Tripura are made.
Sources said that the prime minister and union home minister Rajnath Singh had shortlisted the names and it was sent to the President for final approval.
Speaking to the mediapersons in Mumbai, senior BJP leader Naik, who was appointed as the governor of Uttar Pradesh replacing BL Joshi, said, ‘The party leadership had approached me to accept the post of the governor of Uttar Pradesh, which I agreed. It will be a challenging job, which I am accustomed to.
Earlier, amid pressure from the NDA government and CBI’s questioning against two of them had forced five to quit from the post of governors. Those who were stepped down are: BL Joshi (Uttar Pradesh), MK Narayanan (West Bengal), Shekhar Dutt (Chhattisgarh), Ashwani Kumar (Nagaland), BV Wanchoo (Goa) and Vakkom Purushothaman (Tripura).
The governor of Karnataka HR Bhardwaj was retired last month, while a few days ago, governor of Puducherry Virendra Kataria was reportedly ‘sacked’ by the new government.
The other major reshuffles are Gujarat governor Kamala Beniwal was transferred to Mizoram, while Mizoram governor Vakkom Purushothaman shifted to Nagaland. However, Purushothaman too resigned and Acharya was made the governor of Mizoram.
Interestingly, some of the Congress appointee governors manage to secure their seats. They are: Sheila Dikshit, one of the trusted aides of UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi.
Dikshit is presently the governor of Kerala. The governor of Haryana, Punjab and Maharashtra, Jaganath Pahadia, Shivraj V Patil and K Sankaranarayanan respectively manages to stays back as governors appointed during the UPA regime.
Party insider claimed that in coming weeks there are speculations that Dikshit and Sankaranarayanan might be transferred to northeastern states. Names of eight more governors will be announced soon.
According to the communique, Keshari Nath Tripathi, a former Uttar Pradesh Speaker will take over in West Bengal, a post which had fallen vacant after the resignation of MK Narayanan after he was nudged to resign.