Cabinet reshuffle: At the iconic Durbar Hall, the venue of the event, the usual crowds associated with such a grand event was missing. But there were several other departures from tradition too.
With Covid-19 restrictions in place, the swearing-in ceremony of the newly inducted members of the Union council of ministers at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on Wednesday was a thinly attended event with just 50 guests.
At the iconic Durbar Hall, the venue of the event, the usual crowds associated with such a grand event was missing. But there were several other departures from tradition too.
The newly appointed ministers sat in two different areas as opposed to the norm of all of them sitting together on the right side of the hall in front of the Prime Minister and other invitees. Apart from Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Vice President Venkaiah Naidu and Union home minister Amit Shah, only a few other Union ministers came to attend the programme. A Rashtrapati Bhavan functionary said, “We have made seating arrangements keeping in mind the Covid protocol of the past few months.”
Each new minister who took oath on Wednesday was requested to bring only one guest along as seats were limited. Since last year, President Ram Nath Kovind has cut down on the number of events where his physical presence is required and conducts most of his business online. In keeping with that, he received credentials of some foreign envoys through a digital platform on Wednesday.