Amit Mitra Appointed Senior Chief Advisor of West Bengal CM, Finance Department
Amit Mitra, who served as West Bengal’s finance minister for the past decade, is set to be appointed as the main chief adviser to the chief minister and the finance department as his term ends on November 5.
He was given the status of a minister of ministerial rank. Mitra, 73, who had expressed his desire to retire from active politics due to “poor health”, refrained from contesting assembly elections held earlier in the year.
Although he was retained as finance minister after the TMC returned to power for the third consecutive term, his term ended last week, in line with constitutional provisions.
The Constitution allows a non-member of a state legislature or parliament to continue in office for only six months. “During today’s cabinet meeting, it was decided that Amit Mitra would become the chief senior adviser to the chief minister on finance-related matters. This will be a cabinet-level position,” he said. State Parliamentary Affairs Minister Partha Chatterjee told reporters on Tuesday.
Chatterjee also said the cabinet has now decided that the area required to identify land as an industrial park has been reduced from 20 acres to five acres.
Although there was no official word, sources said the reassignment of ministries was made at the meeting. “Mamata Banerjee, for the time being, will take care of the finance department. Chandrima Bhattacharya has been given the additional post of Minister of State in this department,” a senior official said.
Public Health Engineering Department Minister Pulak Ray has been assigned to take care of the panchayat portfolio, following the death of Subrata Mukherjee, he said. “Manas Bhunia, who currently holds the Irrigation Department portfolio, has been assigned to take care of the Consumer Affairs Department as Sadhan Pande is currently ill.
The Department of Industrial Reconstruction was assigned to Industry Minister Partha Chatterjee. Announcements have not yet been made as a notification in this regard will be released shortly,” the official said on condition of anonymity.
Few other junior ministers such as Becharam Manna and Birbhaha Hansda received additional assignments as state ministers for panchayat department and consumer affairs, he added.