Women and Child Development Minister Smriti Irani will take additional charge of the Minority Affairs ministry, the Centre said in a press release on Wednesday, 6 July.
This comes after Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi resigned from the post following the end of his parliamentary tenure. Union Steel Minister and Janata Dal (United) leader Ram Chandra Prakash Singh also resigned a day before his term was set to expire. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, earlier in the day, lauded them for their efforts during their tenure.
President Ram Nath Kovind accepted their resignations and reassigned the Minority Affairs and Steel portfolios, which were held by Naqvi and Singh respectively.
"Further, as advised by the Prime Minister, The President has directed that Smt. Smriti Zubin Irani, Cabinet Minister, be assigned the charge of the Ministry of Minority Affairs, in addition to her existing portfolio," a release from Rashtrapati Bhawan read.
Irani, while thanking PM Modi, said that she would fulfil her responsibilities with "devotion".
"I will serve the country through the welfare of minority sections," she added.
Naqvi, prior to his resignation, was the sole Muslim minister in the Narendra Modi-led central government and among the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) 395 members of Parliament.
Notably, in 2016, Smriti Irani had found herself mired in controversy for her remarks against late Dalit scholar Rohith Vemula.
Scindia Assigned Ministry of Steel
Meanwhile, Union Civil Aviation Minister Jyotiradiya Scindia has been assigned the Ministry of Steel, which was headed by Singh until his resignation. Scindia is set to hold the charge in addition to the charge of Civil Aviation Ministry.
"Furthermore, as advised by the Prime Minister, The President has directed that Shri Jyotiraditya M. Scindia, Cabinet Minister, be assigned the charge of the Ministry of Steel, in addition to his existing portfolio," the release also said.
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