Chief minister Mamata Banerjee today made major changes in her cabinet, reducing the responsibilities of some ministers and allotting departments to two ministers who were kept without portfolios for the last six months. According to sources the move comes in the wake of Banerjee’s expressing dissatisfaction with the work of some of the departments. Additional responsibility has been given to ministers Subrata Mukherjee while Bratya Basu and Rajib Banerjee have been relieved of some of their responsibilities. Ministers without portfolios Binoy Krishna Burman and Shantiram Mahato were given fresh responsibilities.
Binoy Krishna Burman has been given the charge of backward classes welfare department and tribal affairs department. Shantiram Mahato has been given charge of department of Paschimanchal Unnayan Affairs. Panchayat and rural development minister Subrata Mukherjee has been given the additional charge of the department of non conventional and renewable energy sources, which was held by Sobhandeb Chattopadhyay along with power department.
Chattopadhyay will continue to hold the charge of power department alone. The development comes within a week after Chattopadhyay had alleged that he was assaulted by supporters of fellow party leader and MP Mala Roy following a tiff during the Kolkata International Film Festival. The charge was denied by Mala Roy, who also filed a police complaint. Bratya Basu has been left with the charge of the department of science and technology and biotechnology. He earlier held the forest department as well.
Rajib Banerjee has been given the charge of department of forests while relieving him of the charge of backward classes welfare department and tribal affairs department. The last Cabinet reshuffle was done in May 2019 after a stupendous performance of the BJP in Bengal, where it won 18 Lok Sabha seats, only four less than TMC out of the total 42 parliamentary constituencies in the state. At that time the then Forest Department minister Binay Krishna Barman and Western Region Development minister Shantiram Mahato were kept as ministers without any portfolio.