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RR Patil back as Home Minister

Monday, November 09, 2009 02:24:42 PM, Agencies &

RR Patil

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Malegaon: At the time when the investigations into the Malegaon 2008 blast has virtually come to an end and the 26/11 Mumbai terror attack is completing a year, RR Patil is back as Home Minister in Maharashtra.


RR Patil had taken the oath as cabinet Minister when the new government took the shape on Saturday. He has been assigned the job as Home Minister when Chief Minister Ashok Chavan announced the portfolios yesterday late in the evening.


RR Patil was heading the ministry in the erstwhile government when the state Anti-Terrorism Squad (ATS) led by Hemant Karkare exposed the hitherto hidden face of the right wing Hindu Terrorism. Hemant Karakare was later killed in the November 26, 2008 attack in Mumbai by the Pakistani terrorists.


RR Patil had to quit the post after making a statement in Hindi that appeared to play down the deadly attack by the Pakistani terrorists. The statement, blamed on his poor knowledge of the language, had showed him in a bad light and was the immediate trigger for him being asked to leave the post. While Pawar thought it fit to reinstate him as home minister, reliable sources said the Congress also preferred Patil as home minister. The other aspirant, deputy chief minister Chhagan Bhujbal, had repeatedly said during the bargaining for portfolios that if the Congress did not agree to the 1999 formula for power sharing, the NCP would support the government from the outside.


NCP leader Jayant Patil, who was Home Minister in the outgoing government, would now handle Rural Development Ministry, party sources said.


Arif Naseem Khan one of the four Muslim ministers has been assigned Textile and Awkaf.


NCP chief Sharad Pawar's nephew Ajit Pawar would handle Power portfolio, in addition to the Water Resources Ministry he handled earlier.


Deputy Chief Minister Chhagan Bhujbal would continue to hold his Public Works Department portfolio while Jaydutt Shilsagar will handle Public Enterprises.


Sunil Tatkare, who was Power Minister in the earlier government, would be the new Finance Minister.


Senior Congress leader Narayan Rane would be the new Revenue Minister. The Industry portfolio earlier handled by Rane will now be handled by Rajendra Darda.


Patangrao Kadam who earlier held Revenue portfolio would be the new Forest Minister, sources said.


Harshvardhan Patil of Congress has retained his Cooperatives, Marketing and Parliamentary Affairs portfolios.


NCP leader Anil Deshmukh will be Food and Civil Supplies Minister, Laxman Dhoble Water Supply and Rajesh Tope will be Minister for Higher and Technical Education.


Balasaheb Thorat will continue to hold Agriculture portfolio, Suresh Shetty Public Health, Shivajirao Moghe Social Justice and Subhash Zanak Women and Child Welfare.









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