The Hush Post: Smriti Irani has been moved out of the Information and Broadcasting Ministry on Monday.
The I&B ministry will now be handled by Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, who also happens to be sports minister.
The Railway Minister Piyush Goyal will handle the Finance Ministry till Arun Jaitley, who recently underwent a kidney transplant is back on the job.
Irani was given the Information and Broadcasting portfolio as an additional charge last July, after Venkaiah Naidu resigned. He subsequently became Vice-President. Though, Irani will retain charge of the textiles ministry. She has been handling textile since July 2016.
This is the second time Irani is being moved out of a key ministry. The 42-year-old, who started as the Human Resource Development Minister in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cabinet, was transferred to the textiles ministry.
The transfer came after many controversies during Irani’s tenure, including protests and agitations across campuses after Dalit student Rohith Vemula committed suicide in Hyderabad.
Irani’s 10-month tenure in the Ministry was marked by a major controversy in March over proposed rule that envisaged severe punishment for journalists on accusation of fake news. The rule suggesting withdrawal of accreditation was immediately cancelled by PM after it was widely attacked as an attempt to curb freedom of press.
President Kovind’s office also said SS Ahluwalia, who was the junior minister for drinking water and telecom, will be the minister of state for the department of electronics and information technology. He replaces Alphons Kannanthanam, who will retain charge of tourism ministry.