Lucknow: Akhilesh Yadav, the state president of the Samajwadi Party, was sworn in as the youngest chief minister of the country’s most populous state, Uttar Pradesh, along with 19 cabinet ministers and 28 state ministers by Governor BL Joshi here on Thursday. The ceremony was attended, among others, by Union minister Pawan Kumar Bansal, Congress leader Motilal Vohra and Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal.
CPI(M) general secretary Prakash Karat, CPI leader A B Bardhan, industrialists Anil Ambani and Subrata Roy Sahara, and filmstars Jaya Bachchan and Javed Khan were also present. Former chief minister and BSP supremo Mayawati was represented by ex-cabinet ministers Naseemuddin Siddiqui and Swami Prasad Maurya.
Talking to newsmen at his first press conference after being sworn in, Akhilesh said his government’s first cabinet meeting would be held later in the day, in which “many important decisions are expected to be taken’’.
‘‘Samajwadi Party will fulfill each and every promise made in the manifesto,” Akhilesh said, adding that law and order would be his government’s priority. From today, it is our responsibility. Till now we have been levelling allegations on others, Akhilesh told reporters.
When asked how would his government mop up resources of around R63,000 crore for the various populist sops promised by his party in the manifesto, Akhilesh said that when the previous government could garner huge sums of money for building parks and statues, his government would also be able to arrange for resources to fulfill the party’s promises. “Our promises centre around the aspirations of the youth: providing laptops and tablets to students, unemployment allowance to the unemployed and providing basic health and education facilities to the people of the state.
“It is the responsibility of the SP government to implement its election manifesto among the people and things it said before them’’, he said, adding that the unprecedented rush to get enrolled at the various employment exchanges in the state shows that the problem of unemployment, which was hitherto hidden, has now come out in the open.
Akhilesh’s ministry had a mix of old and new faces. While veterans like Azam Khan, Waqar Ahmad Shah, Shivpal Yadav, Ahmad Hasan and Ambika Chaudhary have been given cabinet berths, new faces like Abhishek Mishra, first time MLA from Lucknow north seat, has also been inducted in the ministry.