Manipur Chief Minister N Biren Singh Sunday distributed portfolios to the five ministers recently inducted into his Cabinet, amid clamour against the reshuffle.
Of the five newly inducted ministers, three are sitting MLAs of the BJP and two are former Congress MLAs who defected to the BJP. Okram Henry Singh, one of the two Congress turncoats, is the nephew of former chief minister of Manipur, Okram Ibobi Singh. He has been allotted the Social Welfare, Cooperation and MAHUD portfolios. Oinam Lukhoi, the other former Congressman, has been given Agriculture, Veterinary and Animal Husbandry and Tourism.
Of the three BJP MLAs, Sorokhaibam Rajen of Lamsang assembly constituency got Education, Fisheries and CADA, Vungzagin Valte of Thanlon A/C got Tribal Affairs and Hills, Transport and GAD, and Satyabrata Singh of Yaiskul A/C was given Consumers Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, Law and Legislative Affairs and Labour and Employment.
Some of the key portfolios like Health, Revenue, Planning and other departments, which have not been allocated specifically to anyone yet, have been taken over by the Chief Minister.
Rajen, Valte, Lukhoi, Satyabrata and Henry were inducted on September 24 after the government dropped six ministers – Th Radheshyam, Nemcha Kipgen, V Hangkhanlian of the BJP; L Jayantakumar and N Kayisii of the National People’s Party (NPP) and Karam Shyam, the lone LJP MLA. While five ministers were appointed, one cabinet berth is still vacant.
Civil society organisations and BJP workers, particularly from Kangpokpi and Heirok Assembly constituencies, have organised protests against the reshuffle. In Kangpokpi, women burnt Biren Singh’s effigy, demanding reinstating of Nemcha Kipgen, the lone woman minister and Kangpokpi MLA.
Reference: The Indian Express