- Ten MLAs of the Aam Aadmi Party will take oath as Ministers in Punjab today
- Among the 10 ministers, eight are first-time MLAs
- Punjab's newly-elected MLAs including CM Mann took oath as members of Legislative Assembly on Mar 17
Punjab Cabinet oath-taking: Ten ministers, including a woman, were on Saturday inducted in the Bhagwant Mann government in Punjab. Among the 10 ministers, eight are first-time MLAs. After their oath-taking, the newly inducted ministers will assume charge in the Punjab Civil Secretariat and the first cabinet meeting of the AAP government will be held in the afternoon, sources said.Punjab Governor had on Wednesday administered the oath of office and secrecy to Bhagwant Mann, who was sworn in as chief minister at Khatkar Kalan, the ancestral village of freedom fighter Bhagat Singh.
The AAP bagged 92 seats in the 117-member Punjab assembly, decimating the Congress, the Shiromani Akali Dal-Bahujan Samaj Party combine, and the BJP-Punjab Lok Congress-SAD (Sanyukt) alliance.
here are 18 berths in the cabinet, including the chief minister. Of the ten, five MLAs represent Malwa region, four Majha and one legislator is from Doaba.
Harpal Singh Cheema, Dr Baljit Kaur, Harbhajan Singh from Jandiala, Dr Vijay Singla from Mansa, Lal Chand from Bhoa, Gurmeet Singh, Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal from Ajnala, Laljit Singh Bhullar from Patti, Brahm Shanker from Hoshiarpur and Harjot Bains from Anandpur Sahib took oath as Cabinet ministers.
Harpal Singh Cheema
Cheema, an advocate by profession, had defeated Shiromani Akali Dal's Gulzar Singh Moonak by a margin of 50,655 votes. He was first elected as an MLA in 2017 and also served as a member of the Assembly committee on welfare of SCs, STs and BCs.
Dr Baljit Kaur
The lone woman who found ministerial berth is Dr Baljit Kaur, who won from Malout. An eye surgeon, 46, she is the daughter of Sadhu Singh, who remained an AAP MP from Faridkot from 2014 to 2019. She joined AAP after resigning from her government job at the Muktsar civil hospital. During election meetings, she had even examined eye patients. Kaur defeated SAD nominee Harpreet Singh by 40,261 votes from Malout in Muktsar district.
Dr Vijay Singla
Dr Vijay Singla, 52, won from Mansa, where he defeated popular Punjabi singer and Congress candidate Shubhdeep Singh, also called Sidhu Moosewala, by a huge margin of 63,323 votes. Singla is a dentist and did Bachelor of Dental Surgery from Punjabi University, Patiala.
Lal Chand Kataruchakk
Lal Chand Kataruchakk, who was president of the party's SC wing, won from Bhoa seat in Pathankot. He trounced Congress candidate Joginder Pal.
Harbhajan Singh won from Jandiala after defeating Punjab Congress working president Sukhwinder Singh Danny. Harbhajan had unsuccessfully contested from the seat in 2017.
Two-time Barnala MLA Gurmeet Singh Hayer was also able to make space for himself in the Bhagwant Mann-led cabinet. The 32-year-old politician is a Graduate Professional and a mechanical engineer. Hayer, president of the AAP's youth wing, defeated SAD nominee Kulwant Singh Keetu by a margin of 37,622 votes from Barnala seat.
Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal
Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal was elected MLA from Ajnala. He defeated SAD candidate Amarpal Singh. Dhaliwal had contested the 2019 Lok Sabha elections from Amritsar.
Laljit Singh Bhullar
Laljit Singh Bhullar became MLA from Patti seat. He defeated political stalwart Adesh Partap Singh Kairon, who is the son-in-law of former chief minister Parkash Singh Badal. Bhullar joined AAP in 2019.
Harjot Bains has been elected from Anandpur Sahib constituency. He defeated former speaker and Congress candidate Rana K P Singh. Bains, a lawyer by profession, had unsuccessfully contested from Sahnewal in 2017. Bains is a former president of the party's youth wing.
Bram Shanker Jimpa
Bram Shanker Jimpa has been elected from Hoshiarpur seat. He defeated former minister and Congress nominee Sunder Sham Arora.
(With agencies inputs)