Railway Minister Piyush Goyal was on Friday given additional charge of the Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution Ministry, a portfolio held by the late Lok Janshakti Party leader Ram Vilas Paswan.
A Rashtrapati Bhavan communique on Friday said President Ram Nath Kovind, on the advice of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, directed that Goyal be assigned the ministry in addition to his existing portfolios.
"The President of India, as advised by the Prime Minister, has directed that Shri Piyush Goyal, Cabinet Minister, be assigned the charge of the Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food and Public Distribution, in addition to his existing portfolios," read the Rashtrapati Bhavan communique.
A Member of Parliament from Rajya Sabha, Goyal served as the Minister of State for Coal, Power and New and Renewable Energy in the Modi government between 2014 and 2017 and later elevated as the Minister of State for Mines with independent charge during the cabinet reshuffle on July 5, 2016.
He became the Minister of Railways on September 3, 2017, taking over from Suresh Prabhu. During former Finance Minister Arun Jaitley's absence for medical treatment, Goyal was charged with the ministry and presenting the Interim-Union Budget of India on February 1, 2019.
Goyal also serves as the Deputy Leader of the House in Rajya Sabha.
Paswan passed away on Thursday days after the 74-year-old Lok Janshakti Party leader and NDA alliance partner from Bihar underwent heart surgery in a Delhi hospital.
Ram Vilas Paswan, an eight-time Lok Sabha MP and one of the most prominent Dalit leaders of the country had been a part of several governments headed by various BJP-led NDA and Congress-led UPA alliances since the mid-1990s. Top dignitaries, including Modi, paid their last respects to him at his residence. The cremation will take place in Patna on Saturday.
Law and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad will represent the central government and the union council of ministers at the funeral of the veteran leader in Patna on Saturday.
—With inputs from agencies
(Edited by : Ajay Vaishnav)
First Published: IST