New Delhi: Vayalar Ravi on Tuesday became the fifth person to assume charge as Minister for Science and Technology in three years since UPA returned to power in 2009.

Ravi was allocated the Science and Technology and Earth Sciences by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh after incumbent Vilasrao Deshmukh took ill critically. Deshmukh passed away on August 14.

Assuming charge of his new portfolios, Ravi said scientists shall continue their good work without any intervention from the Ministry.

The Ministry would always provide the fullest support to the scientists in their endeavour, Ravi was quoted as saying in an official release.

Deshmukh had succeeded Pawan Kumar Bansal, who after a tenure of a little over six months, had returned to his old Water Resources ministry in July last year.

After the UPA was re-elected in May 2009, Prithviraj Chavan was appointed as the Minister for Science and Technology and Earth Sciences.

HRD Minister Kapil Sibal, who held the twin portfolios in UPA-I, was given the charge after Chavan was sent to Maharashtra in November last year as chief minister.

The minor reshuffle of the Cabinet in January saw Bansal being allocated the Science and Technology and Earth Sciences portfolio as additional charge to his Parliamentary Affairs ministry.

There is speculation about a Cabinet reshuffle after the ongoing Monsoon Session of Parliament which concludes on September 7.


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