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India Has New Cabinet


Indian Defense Minister Pranab Mukherjee will now run the foreign ministry, after a Cabinet reshuffle that brings in three new faces.

The new defense minister will be A.K. Antony, a former chief minister of the southern Indian state of Kerala.

Also sworn in as junior ministers were M.H. Ambareesh, a film actor-turned Congress politician, and Jayprakash Narain Yadav of the government's coalition partner, Rashtriya Janata Dal.

The crucial foreign ministry post fell vacant last November when then-minister Natwar Singh was charged with receiving kickbacks in the investigation of the UN oil-for-food program in Iraq.

This reshuffle takes the number of ministers in the three-level Cabinet to 80. It has 34 ministers, seven deputy ministers and 39 junior ministers.

Some information for this report was provided by AP and Reuters.

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