Sidhartha Bhattacharyya, Ranjit Dutta, Bhabesh Kalita and Phani Bhushan Choudhury, who were the key ministers in the previous government in Assam, are dropped as BJP-led alliance formed the government for the second term in the state on Monday.
Senior BJP leader Himanta Biswa Sarma was sworn in as the new Chief Minister, along with 13 members of his cabinet, by Governor Jagdish Mukhi in Guwahati.
59-year-old Sidhartha Bhattacharyya, who has held key positions in the party and its government, was conspicuous by his absence in the new Cabinet.
Bhattacharyya served as the president of the state BJP besides holding some key portfolios in the previous government including education and Guwahati development.
Also missing in the new cabinet is 64-year-old former Assam BJP president Ranjit Dutta, who held irrigation and handloom & textile portfolios in the Sarbananda Sonowal-led previous government.
Dutta has won the Assam Assembly elections from Behali constituency for the fourth time.
49-year-old Bhabesh Kalita, who was minister of State (Independent Charge) for Irrigation in the Sonowal’s council of minister, also lost his ministerial berths.
Senior AGP leader Phani Bhushan Choudhury, who was the food and civil supplies and consumer affairs minister in the previous government, did not make it to the Cabinet this time.
Choudhury has a distinct record of representing the Bongaigaon constituency for the 8th consecutive time since 19 85 in the Assam Legislative Assembly.
Two newly-elected BJP MLAs—Jayanta Malla Baruah and Padma Hazarika—whose names were doing the round as the potential ministers, also failed to make it to the new cabinet led by Sarma.
While Hazarika is a fifth-time MLA from Sootea constituency, Baruah is known as a loyalist of chief minister Sarma.