Mamata reshuffles state Cabinet
Kolkata: Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Tuesday made a few major changes in her Cabinet.
Bratya Basu, who was in-charge of Science, Technology & Biotechnology department was handed over the additional charge of the state Forest department. With the appointment of Basu as Forest minister, Binay Krishna Barman, who held the charge of the department till date, has no portfolio at hand. Sujit Bose, the state Fire and Emergency Services minister was given the additional charge of Minister of State, Forest.
Suvendu Adhikari was handed over the charge of Irrigation and Waterways along with Water Resources Investigation and Development department in addition to his portfolio of the Transport department. The Water Resources Investigation department was under Subrata Mukherjee who had contested in the Lok Sabha elections from Bankura. Mukherjee was, however, handed back the charge of the Panchayats department. Chandrima Bhattacharjee was holding the charge of the Panchayats department since Mukherjee was fielded by the Trinamool Congress in the parliamentary elections. Mukherjee will also hold the charge of Paschimanchal Unnayan Affairs department.
"Mukherjee has gained good knowledge regarding the western part due to his extensive election campaigns for the recent Lok Sabha polls," Banerjee said.
Shantiram Mahato who was holding the charge of Paschimanchal Unnayan Affairs was removed and presently has no portfolio.
Chandrima Bhattacharjee who has been holding the independent charge of the Housing department was handed over the additional charge of Minister of State, Panchayats department.
Sources in the state Secretariat Nabanna added that the results of the Lok Sabha elections went against Binay Krishna Barman and Shantiram Mahato. Barman failed to provide lead for the party from his Assembly constituency in Mathabhanga as TMC candidate Paresh Chandra Adhikari lost the Cooch Behar LS seat to the BJP by a huge margin. TMC candidate Mriganko Mahato was also defeated by BJP in Purulia with Mahato being the MLA from Balarampur Assembly seat.
Soumen Kumar Mahapatra was given the charge of the state Environment and Public Health Engineering (PHE) department which was earlier with Suvendu Adhikari. Mahapatra was earlier with the Irrigation and Waterways department that has now gone to Adhikari.
Moloy Ghatak who lost his PHE department to Mahapatra would continue to hold the charge of Law and Labour department. Ghatak, an MLA from Asansol Uttar Assembly constituency, failed to provide lead to TMC candidate Moon Moon Sen who lost from Asansol Lok Sabha seat.
The Tribal Development department has been merged with the Backward Classes Welfare department and the charge has been given to Rajib Banerjee. Chandrima Bhattacharjee has been holding the charge of Minister of State for the Tribal Development department.