Kavinder Gupta, who resigned as the Speaker of Jammu and Kashmir Assembly on April 29, 2018, was sworn-in as the Deputy Chief Minister of Jammu and Kashmir, replacing BJP colleague Nirmal Singh.
The oath of office and secrecy was administered to Kavinder Gupta by Governor NN Vohra.
Bigger reshuffle in J&K’s PDP-BJP government
• This change in position was a part of a bigger reshuffle in J&K’s PDP-BJP government headed by Mehbooba Mufti.
• The reshuffle also saw the induction of four new faces- Satpal Sharma from Kathua and Sambha MLAs Rajiv Jasrotia and Devinder Kumar Manyal and Shakti Raj Parihar as State Unit Chief.
• Moreover, BJP elevated Minister of State for Transport Sunil Sharma to the rank of a Cabinet minister.
• The BJP also withdrew three ministers - Nirmal Singh, Bali Bhagat and Priya Sethi.
• On the other hand, the PDP dropped its Law and Rural Development Minister Abdul Haq Khan from the cabinet.
• While, Pulwama MLA Mohd Khalil Band and Sonwar MLA Mohd Ashraf Mir were sworn in as cabinet ministers.
What led to this cabinet reshuffle?
The change in cabinet came following the resignation of Chander Prakash Ganga and Choudhary Lal Singh, who participated in a controversial rally supporting the Kathua rape and murder accused.
On April 17, 2018, BJP had asked all its nine ministers in the PDP-BJP government to submit their resignations to bring in new faces in the two-year-old Mehbooba Mufti cabinet.
The state of Jammu and Kashmir can have a maximum of 25 ministers, including the Chief Minister. Of which, 14 portfolios are with the PDP and the remaining are with the BJP.
Who: Kavinder Gupta