April 2016 News

Mehbooba Takes Oath As JK's First Woman CM - Her Time Starts Now

4 April 2016
Greater Kashmir
Yogesh Sagotra

Jammu: Peoples Democratic Party president Mehbooba Mufti on Monday became the first woman chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir. She took the oath as 13th Chief Minister of the State at a low-key swearing-in ceremony held at Raj Bhawan, here. Wearing her signature-style light Mehandi-colour dress with Kashmiri embroidery on it, Mehbooba arrived at the venue with her mother Gulshan Ara and brother Tasaduq at around 10.55 am and straightaway headed towards the stage where Governor N N Vohra was waiting for her. After the ceremonial national anthem, Vohra administrated oath to Mehbooba who fumbled in the beginning and jumped a few words before Governor started again to let her regain the pace. However, she soon settled down and thanked him. She sat next to BJP's DrNirmal Singh who took the oath after Mehbooba. The 56-year-old Mehbooba is presently LokSabha member from South Kashmir- representing Anantnag parliamentary constituency. Besides Mehbooba and Nirmal, Governor also administered Oath of Office and Secrecy to other 15 cabinet and six junior ministers that will comprise her Council of Ministers. Of total PDP and BJP legislators administered the oath, PDP will have nine cabinet ministers and BJP eight. Both PDP and BJP will have three ministers of state each. Interestingly, this is the first time Mehbooba Mufti is holding an administrative post in the state as she has limited herself to party work so far. AbdurRehmanVeeri, ChanderParkash, GhulamNabi Lone, Bali Bhagat, AbdulHaq Khan, Lal Singh, Syed BasharatBukhari, SajadGani Lone, Haseeb A Drabu, CheringDorjey, ChoudharyZulfkar Ali, Sham LalChoudhary, Naeem Akhtar, Abdul GhaniKohli and Imran Raza Ansari took oath as cabinet ministers while AsiyaNaqash, Sunil Kumar Sharma, Syed Farooq Andrabi, PriyaSethi, Zahoor Ahmad Mir and Ajay Nanda took oath as Ministers of State. The oath ceremony was attended by Usha Vohra, First Lady; M Venkaiah Naidu, Union Minister of Urban Development; HarsimratKour, Union Minister of Food Processing; DrJitendra Singh, Union Minister of State in PMO; Dr. Farooq Abdullah and Omar Abdullah, former Chief Ministers; Kavinder Gupta, Speaker of the Legislative Assembly; Haji Anayat Ali, Chairman Legislative Council; Nazir Ahmed Khan (Gurezi), Deputy Chairman, Legislative Assembly; ParvezDewan and Khurshid Ahmad Ganai, Advisors to Governor; Chairpersons and Vice-Chaipersons of various Boards and Commissions; Legislators; Ram Madhav, National General Secretary, AvinashRaiKahanna, National Vice-President BJP; B R Sharma, Chief Secretary; D C Raina, Advocate General, J&K; K Rajendra, DGP; senior Civil and Police officers, political leaders and prominent citizens of the State. MINISTERS TAKE OATH IN 5 LANGUAGES The new Council of Ministers on Monday exhibited linguistic diversity as they took oath in five languages, including Kashmiri and Dogri. Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti and her deputy DrNirmal Singh took the oath in Urdu and Hindi languages, respectively. However Mehbooba fumbled in the beginning while taking the oath and jumped few words before Governor N N Vohra started again to make Mehbooba pick up her pace. Four ministers including SajjadGani Lone of Peoples Conference (PC), DrHaseebDrabu (PDP), TseringDorjay and Abdul GaniKohli (both BJP) took the oath in English. PDP minister Syed BasharatBukhari took the oath in Kashmir language while BJP's Chowdhury Lal Singh took it in Dogri language. Other PDP members in council including AbdurRehnamVeeri, GhulamNabiHanjura, Abdul Haq Khan, ChoudharyZulfikar Ali, NaeemAktherAndrabi, Imran RazaAnzari, AsiyaNaqsh, Syed Farooq Andarbi and Zahoor Ahmad Mir took the oath in Urdu. Soon after taking the oath, Farooq Andarbi went to the Guest Gallery for wishes of GulshanAra, mother of Mehbooba Mufti and other family members. BJP ministers including ChanderParkesh Ganga, Bali Bhagat, Sham Choudhary, Sunil Kumar Sharma, PriyaSethi and Ajay Nanda took the oath in Hindi. Lal Singh, Sunil Sharma and Ajay Nanda ended the oath with 'Jai Hind'. Earlier, Mehbooba came to the venue accompanied by her mother GulshanAra and brother Tasaduq Mufti. 4 NEW FACES INCLUDED, 5 EX-MINISTERS DROPPED The PDP-BJP alliance has inducted four fresh faces in the new Council of Ministers which took the Oath of Office on Monday morning along with Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti. Against 25 ministers in the previous PDP-BJP coalition Council of Ministers, only 23 with 17 cabinet ranks-including Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti and Deputy Chief Minister Nirmal Singh and six Ministers of State-took the oath this time. PDP inducted Zahoor Ahmed Mir, MLA from Pampore constituency in South Kashmir and Syed Farooq Andarbi, MLA from Dooru constituency in South Kashmir as Ministers of State while BJP brought in Sham Choudhary, MLA from Suchetgarh as a Cabinet Minister and Ajay Nanda, MLA Reasi, as MoS in the new Council. On its part, PDP dropped Syed AltafBukhari and Javed Mustafa Mir who held cabinet ranks in the previous PDP-BJP government, and also Abdul MajeedPadder, who was Minister of State in that dispensation. Similarly, BJP dropped SukhnandanChoudhary who held cabinet rank in previous government and independent MLA from UdhampurPawan Gupta who was MoS then. GOVERNOR'S RULE ENDS J&K Governor N N Vohra issued a Proclamation on Monday to revoke the earlier Proclamation issued by him on 9th January 2016 to enforce Governor's Rule in the State. 'The latter Proclamation was issued in exercise of the powers conferred on him under Section 92 of the Constitution of Jammu and Kashmir, whereby he had assumed all the functions of the Government of the State,' an official spokesman said. According to the Raj Bhavan spokesman, the Proclamation issued by the Governor brought to an end the period of Governor's Rule in Jammu and Kashmir which had commenced with effect from 8th January, 2016. CHIEF MINISTER MEETS GOVERNOR Jammu, Apr 4: After being sworn in as Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir, Mehbooba Mufti had a one-on-one meeting with Governor N N Vohra at Raj Bhavan here. The Governor informed the Chief Minister about some of the major issues awaiting her attention. 'The Governor wished Mehbooba Mufti good luck and high success in all her future endeavors to move the State speedily forward on the path of growth and development,' an official spokesman said.