Home Top Story Seven women in Modi’s council of ministers

Seven women in Modi’s council of ministers

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The News Bureau

Seven women took oath on May 26 as ministers in the Narendra Modi government. Sushma Swaraj, the external affairs minister, is a CCS member.

The prime minister, and ministers of home, defence, finance and external affairs constitute the CCS.

Najma Heptulla (74), a Rajya Sabha member since 1980, is the eldest woman minister while actress-turned-politician Smriti Irani (38) is the youngest in the cabinet. Heptulla, BJP's Rajya Sabha MP f

om Madhya Pradesh, was also Modi's lone Muslim face.

Uma Bharati, Maneka Gandhi and Shiromani Akali Dal's Harsimrat Kaur Badal are the other women cabinet ministers.

Besides the six cabinet ministers, BJP's Nirmala Sitharaman took oath as minister of state with independent charge. Seetharaman, who is not an MP, has to secure either a Lok Sabha seat or a Rajya Sabha membership within six months to continue in office.

Harsimrat Kaur Badal (48), the Akali Dal MP from Bathinda, is the lone woman from an ally to be sworn-in as a cabinet minister.

In the outgoing Manmohan Singh government, there were just seven women out of 71 ministers and only two – Girija Vyas and Chandresh Katoch – were in the cabinet.
The number of women ministers may increase as Modi is expected to expand the cabinet soon.

If more women come in, it would be icing on the cake as the 16th Lok Sabha has the highest number of women members – 61 – in Lok Sabha histor

ry. The Rajya Sabha has 29 women members. 

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