Ajit Pawar back as Maharashtra deputy CM as Uddhav expands Cabinet

Ajit Pawar back as Maharashtra deputy CM as Uddhav expands Cabinet

While NCP president Sharad Pawar convened a meeting of senior party legislators at his residence in South Mumbai, the Congress high command summoned state party president Vijay (Balasaheb) Thorat in Delhi for finalisation of names.

Thackeray's son Aaditya, who won from the Worli assembly constituency in Mumbai, is the first member of the family to contest an election.

Maharashtra can have a maximum of 43 ministers. Team Thackeray consist of a mix of youth and experience. Nationalist Congress Party leaders Nawab Malik, Dilip Walse Patil and Dhananjay Munde found a place in the Cabinet, PTI reported. Besides, Satej Patil and Vishwajit Kadam of the Congress will be sworn in as ministers of state, they added.

He was administered the oath of office by Governor B S Koshyari in the presence of Maha Vikas Aghadi Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and other dignitaries. Former Chief Minister Ashok Chavan is likely to get the public works department portfolio, sources said.

Last month six ministers, two each from the Shiv Sena, NCP and the Congress, had been sworn in along with Uddhav Thackeray.

Chief Minister Thackeray and NCP supremo Sharad Pawar were among those present at the swearing-in ceremony. The NCP, with 54 MLAs, has bagged the Deputy CM's position and 16 ministerial berths, while the Congress, with 44 MLAs, will hold the Assembly Speaker's post and 12 ministerial positions.

As per the portfolio-sharing arrangement, Sena was allocated home, urban development, forest, environment, agriculture, industries and higher and technical education, and parliamentary affairs departments; NCP got finance and planning, housing, public health, irrigation, rural development and social justice departments while Congress has been given revenue, energy, PWD, tribal welfare, women and child welfare, textile, relief and rehabilitation.

While the ministerial portfolios are yet to be announced, there is speculation that Aaditya Thackeray will be offered the environment or the education portfolio.

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