Andhra CM expands cabinet, two ministers sworn in

Amaravati: Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy on Wednesday expanded his Cabinet by inducting two ministers and elevated Dharmana Krishnadas as his deputy.

The Chief Minister also made few changes in the portfolios of a couple of ministers.

C. Srinivasa Venugopala Krishna and Seediri Appalaraju took oath of office and secrecy at a ceremony held at Raj Bhavan. Governor Biswabhushan Harichandan administered the oath to them at 1.29 p.m.

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The Chief Minister, a few of his cabinet colleagues, Assembly Speaker T. Seetharam and few top officials attended the brief ceremony. There were only a few invitees in view of the Covid-19 protocol.

Both the ministers belong to backward classes and are first-time MLAs.

The Chief Minister allocated the backward classes welfare portfolio to Venugopala Krishna and animal husbandry, dairy development and fisheries to Appalaraju.

With this, the Chief Minister has filled up the two vacancies which arose with the resignation of Deputy Chief Minister Pilli Subhas Chandra Bose and minister Mopidevi Venkataramana following their election to Rajya Sabha recently.

Subhas Chandra Bose and Venkatramna, who were holding revenue and animal husbandry portfolios, respectively, were members of the Legislative Council.

Jagan Mohan Reddy nominated them to Rajya Sabha after the decision to abolish the upper House of the state legislature.

Venugopala Krishna is the legislator from Ramachandrapuram in East Godavari district and belongs to the same Setti Balija community represented by Subhas Chandra Bose.

The 56-year-old had earlier served as the Zilla Parishad chairman in East Godavari district. Quitting the Congress to join the YSRCP in 2013, he contested unsuccessfully from the Kakinada Urban constituency in 2014. Last year, the YSRCP fielded him from Ramchandrapuram and he got elected.

Appalaraju represents Palasa constituency in Srikakulam district and belongs to fishermen’s community like Venkatramna.

Appalarju is a doctor by profession. The 40-year-old, who was a state ranker in Class 10, did his MD in general medicine from Andhra Medical College in 2007. A practicing doctor, he entered politics in 2017 at the invitation of the YSR Congress Party.

This was the first expansion after Jagan Mohan Reddy inducted 25 ministers in June last year. Five of them were made Deputy Chief Ministers.

Meanwhile, he elevated Cabinet colleague Krishnadas as Deputy Chief Minister in place of Subhas Chandra Bose.

Krishnadas, who has so far been holding the portfolio of roads and buildings, has been entrusted revenue, registration and stamps. The roads and buildings portfolio will now be held by M. Sankarnarayana, who was so far looking after backward classes welfare.

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