Ashwini Kumar Choubey, who assumed charge as the Minister of State for Health on Monday, said that enhancing awareness on public health and reducing people's dependence on "medicines and needles" will be high on his agenda.
He stressed that cleanliness and good health were linked and vowed to take forward the Prime Minister Narendra Modi's mission of a clean and healthy India with dedication.
Terming as unfortunate the death of 49 infants in a month in the Farrukhabad district hospital in Uttar Pradesh, Chowbey said that the government will fight these challenges.
Most of the children died from "perinatal asphyxia", a condition in which the child cannot breathe properly, officials said today.
Choubey, a prominent Brahmin face from Bihar, performed an elaborate puja and took charge amid chantings of sacred hymns. He immediately got down to work by signing a file relating to laying the foundation stone of a new medical college at Nahaan in Shimla.
Elected to the Bihar Legislative Assembly for five consecutive terms, Choubey, 64, represents Bihar's Buxar in the Lok Sabha and was a member of the Parliamentary Committee on Estimates, Standing Committee on Energy, and Consultative Committee on Health and Family Welfare. He is also a member of Central Silk Board.
Choubey is known for the slogan "Ghar-ghar me ho shouchalaya ka nirman, tabhihogaladlibitiya ka kanyadaan" and helped in constructing 11,000 toilets for Mahadalit families in Bihar.
Choubey held portfolios such as Urban Development, PHED and Health both in NDA I (2005-2010) and NDA II (2010-2013).
Sudarshan Bhagat, who was earlier a junior minister in the ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare also took charge as the minister of state for Tribal Affairs here today.
He said that he would strive hard for the overall development of the tribal community in the country work for the conservation of tribal arts and culture.
Bhagat represents Lohardaga (Jharkhand) constituency in Lok Sabha. With his induction, there are now two junior ministers of Tribal Affairs. The other BJP minister is Jaswantsinh Sumanbhai Bhabhor, a sitting MP from Dahod in Gujarat.
Bhagat was also the member of 15th Lok Sabha (2009-2014). He was a member of Jharkhand Legislative Assembly from 2000- 2005 and was Minister of State for Human Resources (2000-2003) and CM Secretariat (Independent Charge) (2003-2004) in the Jharkhand government.