Senior Congress leader and Home Minister Gaikhangam has been designated as Deputy Chief Minister of Manipur, officials said here on Friday.

The order designating Gaikhangam, who is also president of the Manipur Pradesh Congress Committee, was issued by the Chief Secretary, D S Poonia last evening, they said.

Gaikhangam (62), a Naga leader elected to the state Assembly for five consecutive terms from Nungba (ST) constituency in Tamenglong district, was sworn in as minister on March 16 this year and given the home portfolio after consultation with party high command so that he would not contest for the post of Chief Minister, party sources said.

Gaikhangam, a graduate, told media persons last evening that he would carry out his duty sincerely to meet expectations of the people.

This is the second time in the post statehood history of Manipur that a Chief Minister has divested the crucial department of Home to a minister.

The late Irengbam Tompok Singh was the home minister during the Congress-led ministry headed by former Chief Minister Rishang Keishing nearly 25 years ago, sources added.

(This article was published on November 2, 2012)
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