Naik, 80, was the cabinet minister for petroleum and natural gas in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government from 1999 to 2004. He was earlier a minister of state for railways, home, and parliamentary affairs. Tandon, 85, is a former deputy chief minister of Punjab and has also headed the Bharatiya Janata Party in the state. Tripathi, 79, is a former lawyer in Allahabad High Court who has thrice served as speaker in the Uttar Pradesh assembly. He is a former state unit president of the BJP. Kohli, a retired Delhi University professor, has been a Rajya Sabha member and was also a former president of the BJP in Delhi.
Acharya has been a member of the working group on the northeastern region of the BJP. According to the party web site, he has been a co-convenor of the Overseas Friends of BJP. An official communique said the appointments of Naik, Tandon, Tripathi and Kohli "will take effect from the dates (they) assume charge of their offices". A separate communique said Acharya has also been asked to discharge the functions of the governor of Tripura, where incumbent Vakkom Purushothaman has resigned. (IANS)