Hyderabad: AP Chief Minister Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy delivered on his promise of bringing revolutionary changes in the administration, and the composition of his 25-member Cabinet underlines his effort. “The whole country should look to AP,” he had declared soon after taking oath.
For the first time Mr Reddy gave 60 per cent of the berths to ministers weaker sections and providing equitable representation to all major communities and covered all geographical regions. In the 25-member Cabinet, 14 belong to SC, ST, BC and minority sections and 11 to the upper castes. In addition, Mr Reddy elevated five ministers as Deputy Chief Ministers and none of them belongs to the upper castes. Four are from SC, ST, BC and minority communities and one from the Kapu community.
In another radical departure, Mr Reddy has given the key portfolio of home to a woman from the SC community. Among the upper castes, Mr Reddy covered all important castes like Reddy, Kapu, Kamma, Kshatriya and Vysya. In the SCs two categories, Mala and Madiga, were covered and among the BCs Mr Reddy covered all the communities such as Kuruba, Boya, Fishermen, Turpu Kapu, Yadava, Polinati Velama and Settibalija.
He was not able to accommodate Brahmins in the Cabinet but the Deputy Speaker’s post was given to Mr Kona Raghu-pathi who belongs to the community. The Assembly Speaker’s post was given to Mr Tammi-neni Sitaram of the BC community Kalinga which is dominant in Srikakulam district.
In the Praja Sankalpa Yatra, Mr Reddy had promised that if YSRC was voted to power, 50 per cent Cabinet minister posts would be given to weaker sections, but in practice he has given around 60 per cent. Seven ministers are from the BCs communities, five from the SCs and one each from the ST and minority communities.
Mr Reddy’s Cabinet formation came for praise from several sections. Former Union minister and BJP leader U. Krishamraju said that giving around 60 per cent of Cabinet ministers to weaker sections is the “beginning of social revolution”.
Mr Krishamraju said Mr Reddy was a “real political hero” because he had given importance to social justice. SC, ST, BC and minorities were given more importance in the Cabinet, something that never happened in the past. He said that giving five deputy Chief Minister posts to SC, ST, BC, minority and Kapu communities indicated the high leadership qualities of Mr Reddy.
High Court retired judge and National BC Commission former chairman Justice V. Eshwariah said Mr Reddy had embarked on a political and social revolution. He said the CM had taken a “historic decision” ending the generations-long political discrimination by giving more importance to weaker sections. He said Mr Reddy’s sincerity towards weaker sections made him a national leader.