Prime Minister Narendra Modi is set to expand his cabinet for the first time in his second term, as the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party looks to accommodate newer leaders and allies from various states.
The prime minister, the newswire PTI said in a report citing people in the know, met with Union Home Minister Amit Shah and BJP General Secretary BL Santhosh on Tuesday to give final touches for the expansion. A rejig, the report said, was a “strong possibility” as early as Wednesday.
Senior BJP leaders like Sarbanda Sonowal from Assam, Sushil Modi from Bihar and Jyotiraditya Scindia from Madhya Pradesh are expected to be part of the union cabinet, PTI said. More ministers from Uttar Pradesh—which is poll-bound in early 2022—and West Bengal are expected to be accommodated. BJP allies Janata Dal (United) and Apna Dal may also get representation.
The current strength of the Council of Ministers is 53, besides the Prime Minister, with 81 being the ceiling.
Earlier, President Ram Nath Kovind announced a reshuffle of governors in eight states, with Thawarchand Gehlot being appointed governor of Karnataka. That means the portfolio that he’s held till now, Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment, is up for grabs.
The swearing in ceremony is expected around 6 p.m. today, according to ANI.
Track the updates of the cabinet reshuffle here…