BJP's new allies may get Cabinet berths in reshuffle

Union Cabinet reshuffle likely this weekend

The Narendra Modi government is all set for an expansion-cum-reshuffle on 3 September early morning, BJP sources have told Firstpost. "He asked the officers to make efforts in this regard by designing a system for this category", an official statement from the Prime Minister's Office said.

The Cabinet reshuffle was long overdue and has been necessitated because of several factors. The environment ministry was reassigned to Harsh Vardhan as an additional charge after the death of minister Anil Dave. While there are dozen vacancies, a number of senior ministers are also holding dual portfolios.

More than half a dozen ministers are likely to be dropped in a major Cabinet reshuffle by the NDA government, as the ruling BJP prepares to go into the 2019 general elections, one and a half years from now.

Railway Minister Suresh Prabhu, who has received a lot of flak for numerous train accidents during his tenure, is also likely to be shifted out.

Speculation is also rife about who will take charge of the crucial Ministry of Defence that's now being looked after by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley.

Ram Rahim rape verdict: Adequate precaution was taken, says ML Khattar
The verdict came as a big setback to Gurmeet's followers who have converged in large numbers in Panchkula for last few days. Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh was lodged in a make-shift jail at a police training centre in Rohtak soon after his conviction.

Ministers of State Rajiv Pratap Rudy, Sanjiv Kumar Balyan, Faggan Singh Kulaste and Mahendra Nath Pandey resigned late on Thursday night.

He had served as the Cabinet Minister of Law, Justice and Company Affairs and as the Minister of State of Surface Transport from March 1998 to April 1999. The name of Himachal BJP leader Satpal Singh is also doing the rounds for a minister of state berth. Serious discussions are ongoing regarding the reshuffle in the cabinet at the governmental and organisational level.

The new faces likely to join the union government include Bhupendra Yadav, Vinay Sahasrabuddhe, both Rajya Sabha members, Satyapal Singh, Prahlad Patel, Mahesh Girri and Harish Dwivedi (all members of Lok Sabha). As many as eight Union ministers visited him.

Performing ministers like Piyush Goyal, Dharmendra Pradhan, Nirmala Sitharaman, Manoj Sinha and Jitendra Singh - all Ministers of State with independent charge - are likely to be elevated to Cabinet rank.

News reports said they were asked for their resignations by BJP party president Amit Shah.

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