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Jagarnath Mahto’s wife to take oath as Jharkhand minister today

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RANCHI, July 2 (PTI): Former minister Jagarnath Mahto’s wife Baby Devi will take oath as minister in the Hemant Soren-led UPA government in Jharkhand on Monday, a JMM leader said on Sunday.

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A ministerial berth in the Hemant Soren cabinet was vacant after the death of Mahto, who held charge of school education and literacy and excise.

The swearing-in ceremony is likely to be held around noon in Raj Bhavan, the JMM leader said.

“Jharkhand Governor CP Radhakrishnan will administer the oath of office and secrecy to her at an event in Raj Bhavan. Chief Minister Hemant Soren and other cabinet ministers will also be present at the ceremony,” JMM central committee member Vinod Pandey told PTI.

Mahto, who was a four-time JMM MLA from Dumri in Giridih district, died during treatment at a Chennai hospital on April 6.

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The Dumri assembly seat is vacant after the death of the former minister. Devi is likely to contest in the by-election from the seat, the JMM leader said.

Devi told media persons on Sunday that she would complete the unfinished tasks of the former minister.

“The way he (Jagarnath Mahto) used to meet people and share their sorrow and pain, I will be doing the same in same manner,” she said.

In the 81-member Jharkhand assembly, there could be a maximum of 12 ministers including the chief minister in the cabinet.

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However, the Hemant Soren cabinet currently has 10 members.

Devi will be the second JMM leader, who will become a minister in the UPA government before being elected to the Assembly.

Earlier, JMM leader Hafizul Ansari was sworn-in as minister in the UPA government on February 6, 2021. Later he won the Madhupur by-poll on May 2, 2021. The by-election in Madhupur in Deoghar district was necessitated by the death of former minister Haji Hussain Ansari, father of Hafizul, on October 3, 2020.



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