AHMEDABAD, Dec 26 � Narendra Modi, who powered BJP to an emphatic victory in Gujarat, was today sworn in as Chief Minister for the fourth time at the head of a 17-member ministry, in a ceremony boycotted by Opposition Congress and NDA ally JD(U), reports PTI.
Modi was administered the oath of office and secrecy by Governor Kamla Beniwal at a public ceremony marked by the presence of a galaxy of top BJP leaders and allies as also conspicuous absence of any representative of key alliance partner JD(U) and Opposition Congress.
Modi, who became Chief Minister for the first time in 2001 and again in 2002 and 2007, was sworn in along with seven ministers of Cabinet rank and nine Ministers of State.
Nitin Patel, Anandi Patel, Raman Vora, Bhupendrasinh Chudasama, Saurabh Patel, Ganpat Vasawa, Babhbhai Bokhiariya took oath as Cabinet ministers, while Purshottam Solanki, Parbat Patel, Vasuben Trivedi, Pradeepsinh Jadeja, Liladhar Vaghela, Rajnikant Patel, Govind Patel, Nanubhai Vanani and Jayanti Kavadiya were sworn in as Ministers of State.
In a show of unity amid lack of clarity over who would be BJP�s prime ministerial candidate in the 2014 general elections, the party�s top leadership including veteran L K Advani, Sushma Swaraj, Arun Jaitley, its leaders in the Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha respectively, Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh Shivraj Singh Chouhan and his Chhattisgarh and Karnataka counterparts Raman Singh and Jagdish Shettar were present.
The presence of Tamil Nadu Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa added grist to speculation about a possible realignment of her AIADMK with BJP-led NDA.