Senior Minister (Vishwamitra)

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Senior Minister
वरिष्ठ मंत्री
Incumbent
Vacant

since 12 August 2023
StyleHis/Her Excellency The Right Honourable
Member of
Reports toPrime Minister
NominatorPrime Minister
AppointerThe Rashtradhyaksh
on the recommendation of the Prime Minister
Term lengthAt His Majesty's pleasure
Formation14 July 2019; 4 years, 6 months ago
First holderBishnu Chetry and Arnab Sil

The Senior Minister (Hindi: वरिष्ठ मंत्री‎) is a political and cabinet-level position in Vishwamitra. Holders of this office has served as either the prime minister or the deputy prime minister with an only exception to Nishwan Baidantic who served between June and October 2020. Among the executive branch officeholders in the order of precedence, the position ranks after the prime minister and deputy prime minister and above the other cabinet rank ministers. Senior Ministers have often deputised the prime minister in the absence of a deputy prime minister and they often lead or are entrusted with the charge of several ministerial portfolios.

Article 34(6) of the Constitution of Vishwamitra mentions about the position of senior minister:

The position of the Senior Minister shall only be reserved for former Prime Ministers and former Deputy Prime Ministers joining the cabinet.

Background

The office of Senior Minister can be considered to have unofficially being created for the first time in May 2018. In the cabinet former right after the 2018 constitutional coup, the head of government was styled as the President of the Council of Ministers who held a position equivalent to the prime minister, while the Prime Minister in the cabinet was an equivalent to a deputy prime minister. In the same cabinet, the position of Vice President existed which was held by Asmi Patranabis. The vice president was a member of the cabinet and ranked above the other executive members of the cabinet which included the Cabinet Secretary (Home Minister), Secretary of State (Foreign Minister), Chancellor of the Treasury (Finance Minister), and the State Counsellor (Defence Minister).

The office of senior ministers was formally and legally introduced on 14 July 2019 by then Prime Minister Tanishkaa Patranabish on the suggestion and advice from President Varuna Sriraya. Subsequently, the letters patent were issued which named then deputy prime ministers Bishnu Chetry and Arnab Sil as the co-inaugural holders of the position. They were replaced as deputy prime ministers by Abhiraj Kar and Asmi Patranabis respectively. At the time of the creation of the position on 14 July 2019, the senior minister(s) ranked above the deputy prime minister(s) and received a precedence immediately next to the prime minister. The statutes were amended on 29 September 2019, which put the senior minister(s) after the deputy prime minister(s). On 8 November 2019, the Supreme Court in one of their judgements questioned the legality of the offices as their created without the purview of the constitution. This led to the position being abolished.

However, the position of senior minister was re-introduced in the executive cabinet of President Tanishkaa Patranabish in May 2020. Since the president and her deputy were not the members of the cabinet, the most-senior cabinet minister was appointed to head the cabinet and serve as de facto head of government while the president was the de jure head of government. The senior minister was also the leader of the house.

The position have since then being occupied non-continuously dependent on the pleasure of the prime ministers. The current senior minister is Prince Abhiraj who has been in office since 12 May 2022 and is a former acting prime minister.

All of the senior ministers except for Nishwan Baidantic who served between 17 June and 1 October 2020 have been former prime ministers and deputy prime ministers.

List of senior ministers

Eight individuals have served as senior ministers since 2019. Bishnu Chetry, Ankurjyoti Thakuria and Prince Abhiraj of Purvanchal were appointed as senior ministers on two separate occasions. Two of the senior ministers have previously been prime ministers while the rest except for Nishwan Baidantic have served for deputy prime ministers. Nishwan Baidantic was the only senior minister who was neither a former prime minister nor a former deputy prime minister.

No. Portrait Name
(born – died)
Constituency
Tenure in office Other ministerial offices held Political party Government Prime Minister
From To Time in office
1
(1)
File:Bishnu Chetry.png Bishnu Chetry
(born 2001)
MP for Kalapani
14 July
2019
29 September
2019
77 days Congress Tanishkaa V Tanishkaa Patranabish
2 Arnab Sil
(born 2004)
MP for Maligaon
14 July
2019
8 November
2019
117 days
3
(1)
File:Ankurjyoti Thakuria.jpg Ankurjyoti Thakuria
(born 2002)
MP for Devkotanagar
29 September
2019
8 November
2019
40 days
Position abolished by order of the Supreme Court on 8 November 2019 and re-created on 10 May 2020.
1
(2)
File:Bishnu Chetry.png Bishnu Chetry
(born 2001)
MP for Kalapani
10 May
2020
8 June
2020
29 days Congress Tanishkaa VII Tanishkaa Patranabish
Position vacant (8 June 2020 – 17 June 2020)
3
(2)
File:Ankurjyoti Thakuria.jpg Ankurjyoti Thakuria
(born 2002)
MP for Dadara
17 June
2020
28 January
2021
225 days Congress Anoushkaa II Princess Anoushkaa
4 Nishwan Baidantic
(born 2001)
MP for Dhirenpara
17 June
2020
1 October
2020
106 days
Position vacant (28 January – 6 March 2021)
5
(1)
Prince Abhiraj
(born 2006)
MP for Basant Bahar
6 March
2021
11 September
2021
189 days Congress Ștefan II Ștefan Marius Snagoveanu
6 File:Portrait of Princess Anoushkaa (2021).jpg Princess Anoushkaa
(born 2010)
MP for Brikshasthana
11 September
2021
21 October
2021
40 days Farhaz I Farhaz Hazarika
Position vacant (21 October – 22 November 2021)
7 Michal Nowacki
(born 2003)
MP for National Capital Constituency, until 2021
MP for Purvanchal (Councillor), from 2022
22 November
2021
31 January
2022
70 days Congress Farhaz II Farhaz Hazarika
Position vacant (31 January – 12 May 2022)
5
(2)
Prince Abhiraj
(born 2006)
MP for Basant Bahar
12 May
2022
11 November
2022
183 days Independent Farhaz III Farhaz Hazarika
Position vacant (12 November 2022 – 18 March 2023)
8 Ștefan Marius Snagoveanu
(born 2004)
MP for Brikshasthana
18 March
2023
12 August
2023
147 days Independent Farhaz IV Farhaz Hazarika
Position vacant (12 August 2023 – present)

Timeline

Stefan Marius SnagoveanuFrederick Stanislaus Augustus of VishwamitraAnoushkaa Patranabish, Rajpramukh of BasisthaPrince Abhiraj of PurvanchalAnkurjyoti ThakuriaArnab Sil, Rajpramukh of Madhya PrantBishnu Chetry, Rajpramukh of Uttaranchal

See also