Tamil Nadu IT minister dropped from cabinet

Tamil Nadu Chief Minister K Palaniswami has dropped Information Technology Minister Dr M. Manikandan from the state cabinet. As a result, the strength of the Palaniswami ministry has come down to 31.

This drastic action was taken after Manikandan’s public criticism of his cabinet colleague Udumalai Radhakrishnan, who is also the head of the state-run Tamil Nadu Arasu Cable TV.

Governor Banwarilal Purohit has accepted the chief minister’s recommendation to drop Manikandan from the Council of Ministers, a Raj Bhavan release here said. Based on the recommendation of the Chief Minister, the portfolio of Information Technology has been re-allocated to R B Udhayakumar, Minister for Revenue and Disaster Management, it said.

Udhayakumar shall be re-designated as Minister for Revenue & Disaster Management and Information Technology, it added. Since becoming chief minister in February, 2017, this is the first time Palaniswami has dropped a Minister.

Earlier, Palaniswami has reshuffled the ministry in August 2017, inducting O Panneerselvam as deputy chief minister and the latter’s loyalist K Pandiarajan following merger of the AIADMK factions led by him and Panneerselvam.

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