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Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Trivendra Singh Rawat was on Saturday sworn in as the ninth Chief Minister of Uttarakhand.
Rawat, who was elected as the leader of the BJP legislature party on Friday, took oath along with seven cabinet ministers and two ministers of state. Governor K K Paul administered the oath of office and secrecy to Rawat and other ministers.
The presence of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP President Amit Shah, Home Minister Rajnath Singh and other top BJP leaders made the oath taking ceremony a big BJP show. However, Modi left New Delhi soon after the swearing-in ceremony without addressing the public rally.
The cabinet formation turned out to be a bonanza for five former Congress leaders who had revolted against Harish Rawat and joined BJP. Satpal Maharaj, Harak Singh Rawat, Yashpal Arya and Subodh Unniyal were given cabinet berths. Rekha Arya, the lone woman member, who also revolted against Rawat was made minister of state. All these leaders quit Congress at different times after Harish Rawat became Chief Minister in 2014.
From BJP side, three cabinet ministers -- Prakash Pant, Madan Kaushik and Arvind Pandey were given the cabinet berths. Dhan Singh Rawat, with RSS background, was made minister of state.
Two slots have been kept vacant which will be filled shortly, BJP sources said.
Trivedra Singh Rawat has tried to strike a balance between Thakurs and Brahmins, the two dominating communities in the hill state.
Harban Kapoor, who registered his record eighth victory in the assembly elections, is likely to be given the post of Speaker in the Vidhan Sabha. Significantly, Kapoor had served as Speaker in the former BJP government (2007-12) also.