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Babul Supriyo may find a berth as Mamata seeks ‘younger’ Cabinet

Following his defeat in the 2021 Assembly elections, Supriyo had announced that he would quit politics and also resign as Lok Sabha MP. However, on September 18, 2021, he joined the Trinamool Congress in the presence of Abhishek Banerjee.

Babul SupriyoBabul Supriyo (file photo)

Former Union minister Babul Supriyo is likely to be among the ministers to be inducted in the West Bengal government as Mamata Banerjee carries out a reshuffle Wednesday.

Apart from Supriyo, highly placed sources said, Snehashish Chakraborty, Partha Bhowmik, Udayan Guha and Pradip Majumder may get a berth, while district leaders Biplab Roy Chowdhury, Tajmul Hossain and Satyajit Burman may be inducted as Ministers of State.

Among those already in the ministry, MoS Birbaha Hansda may get Independent charge.

Following his defeat in the 2021 Assembly elections, Supriyo had announced that he would quit politics and also resign as Lok Sabha MP. However, on September 18, 2021, he joined the Trinamool Congress in the presence of Abhishek Banerjee.

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He was elected on a TMC ticket from Ballygunge Assembly seat, vacant following the demise of veteran leader and minister Subrata Mukherjee. There has been speculation since that he might be made minister. However, Mamata reportedly was not keen at the time.

On the new ministers, a senior TMC leader said, “Mamata Banerjee wanted a younger Cabinet. That is why younger faces of the party, such as Supriyo, Bhowmik, Chakraborty, may be inducted.”

The leader added: “Our second in command and all-India general secretary Abhishek Banerjee also wants to bring young faces in the new Cabinet, and that will be implemented. He also wanted to bring leaders like Babul Supriyo, Partha Bhowmik to the front.”

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District leaders are going to be picked to counter the charge that the TMC Ministry has though its 11 years been Kolkata-centric.

Among the sitting ministers, there is likely to be a reshuffle in portfolios. According to sources, senior leaders and ministers Malay Ghatak and Manas Bhunia may get more responsibility, whereas that of Firhad Hakim and Chandrima Bhattacharya may be decreased. Soumen Mahapatra had become a district unit president and so may be dropped from the Cabinet.

Following Monday’s Cabinet meeting, Mamata had announced that she would include four-five new faces in Wednesday’s reshuffle. “Subrata Mukherjee and Sadhan Pandey passed away. Partha da (Partha Chatterjee) is in jail. They held important departments like panchayat, industry, consumer affairs and many more. I cannot handle more pressure. In their absence, who will look after these departments? So, I have to include new faces. Some leaders will also be sent to the party organisation.”

First published on: 02-08-2022 at 03:59:00 pm
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