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Smriti Irani Removed From I&B Ministry, Piyush Goyal Appointed Interim Finance Minister

DIVYIA ASTHANA | 0
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| May 15 , 2018 , 08:59 IST

In a minor cabinet shuffle on Monday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi removed Smriti Irani from the Information and Broadcasting Ministry, assigning the full ministry to junior I&B minister Rajyavardhan Rathore who is also the sports minister.

Meanwhile, as Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley recovers from a kidney transplant that took place on Monday, railway minister Piyush Goyal has been temporarily assigned the ministries of finance and corporate affairs.

Although Jaitley had been managing official work despite health issues, the transplant surgery will keep him out of action for at least a few months. Jaitley, will be a "minister without portfolio until he recovers".

ALSO READ: Finance Minister Arun Jaitley Undergoes Successful Kidney Transplant Surgery At AIIMS

After the removal from the I&B ministry and earlier removal from the HRD ministry, Smriti Irani's portfolio has now shrunk to the textiles ministry. Irani's removal from I&B ministry comes in the wake of controversies during her tenure.

In early April, the Information and Broadcasting Ministry had announced action against journalists purporting 'fake news' by removing the concerned journalists' accreditation, a move which was withdrawn by the PMO after criticism from the public.  

Recently, the I&B ministry once again came under criticism after it informed national film awards prize winners at the last minute that President Ram Nath Kovind would be presenting awards for only 1 hour. As the President was accused of partiality, the President's office revealed that the arrangements had been informed to the I&B ministry weeks in advance.

Also, SS Ahluwalia has been appointed as junior minister for electronics and information technology instead of KJ Alphons, the MoS (independent charge) for tourism.