Daniel Mookhey has become the first person of Indian origin and the first Hindu to become Treasurer in any Australian Parliament.
Mr Mookhey took his oath on the Hindu Holy book the Bhagavad Gita becoming the first senior Minister in Australia to do so.
In a statement, Mr Mookhey said:
“I am incredibly honoured and humbled to be the first Australian Minister, state or federally, to take my oath of allegiance on the Bhagavad Gita.T his is only possible because Australia is so open and so welcoming to the contributions of people like my parents, who I was thinking about a lot as I took my oath earlier today.”
Mr Mookhey was among the six Ministers who took oath along with Premier Chris Minns who was sworn in as the 47th Premier of NSW.
Deputy Labor Leader Pru Car was also sworn in as Deputy Premier of NSW. The other Ministers of the interim ministry who took oath were John Graham, Penny Sharpe, Michael Daley, Jo Haylen and Ryan Park. Mr Mookhey will also be the Minister for the Gig Economy.
Mr Mookhey was elected to the NSW Legislative Council in 2015 and became the first politician in Australia’s history to take oath on the Bhagavad Gita during his swearing in ceremony at that time.
Mr Mookhey was appointed Shadow Cabinet Secretary in November 2018 (until July 2019), Shadow Minister for Finance and Small Business July 2019 (until June 2021), Shadow Minister for the Gig Economy in July 2019 and Shadow Treasurer in June 2021.
The new NSW Parliament will have the maximum number of Indian-origin members ever in the NSW Parliament, Treasurer Daniel Mookhey, Charishma Kaliyanda who has been elected from Liverpool and Gurmesh Singh from the Nationals who retained his seat from Coffs Harbour. Deputy Premier Pru Car also has part-Indian ancestry.
Indian-Australians are now around 3% of Australia’s population. According to the latest ABS census, India was the birthplace of the second largest group of overseas-born living in Australia (710,000 India born) while 783,958 declared they had Indian ancestry.
Australia is now also home to over 680,000 Hindus with Hinduism being the third largest religion in the country.