Anandiben Patel sworn in as Gujarat's first woman CM
22 May 2014
Revenue minister Anandiben Mafatbhai Patel became Gujarat's first woman chief minister after she took the oath of office in a ceremony at the Mahatma Mandir in Gandhinagar this afternoon.
Anandiben (72) was administered the oath of office and secrecy by Gujarat governor Kamla Beniwal in the presence of her predecessor and political mentor Narendra Modi, who will formally become Prime Minister of India on Monday.
Present along with their leader was most of the top-line leadership of the Bharatiya Janata Party, including party president Rajnath Singh and senior party leaders L K Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi and Arun Jaitley at the packed oath-taking ceremony.
Patel was elected by legislators as their leader on Wednesday, when Modi resigned as chief minister after an uninterrupted 13-year reign. Modi's close aide Amit Shah, who reportedly does not have a good rapport with Anandiben, was among those who endorsed her name for the chief minister's post.
In Gujarat, Shah and Patel have often been described as Modi's "left and right arms." Like Shah, Anandiben Patel is said to have Modi's complete trust. During his long election campaign, while Amit Shah helped Modi script his massive victory, Patel, the Gujarat revenue minister, held the fort in the state as the head of a group of ministers set up to run the state government.
She is considered an able administrator.
Handing over charge, Modi publicly told Patel that "no files in the chief minister's office are pending", and added, "she is a very hardworking minister and has been a performer, and am sure Gujarat will continue to move forward on path of growth.''