New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s cabinet reshuffle at 6 pm today, the first in his second term, will bring in big changes with an eye on political and administrative challenges, besides elections ahead.
Here are 10 developments in this big story:
Jyotiraditya Scindia, Sarbananda Sonowal, Narayan Rane, Varun Gandhi and Lok Janshakti Party (LJP)’s Pashupati Paras are among the likely new ministers.
The new cabinet will be the “youngest-ever” in India’s history, top government sources say. The shake-up is also expected to bring in a greater share of ministries for OBCs (Other Backward Class).
There will be more women ministers and special representation will be given to those who have administrative experience, say the sources.
Government sources also say the revamped cabinet will include “PhDs, MBAs, post-graduates and professionals”, to bring up the average education level.
The reboot will also focus on regions within states, with an eye on polls in five states next year and the 2024 national election.
A new “Ministry of Cooperation” has been created to “strengthen the cooperative movement in the country”, according to the government.
Ahead of the cabinet changes, Union Social Justice Minister Thawarchand Gehlot was elevated as Governor and several Governors were shifted yesterday.
Mr Gehlot’s exit leaves a Rajya Sabha and government vacancy that opens up possibilities for of recent defectors like Dinesh Trivedi (switched from Trinamool Congress to BJP) and Jitin Prasada (ex-Congress).
Others believed to have received the call are Anupriya Patel (Apna Dal), Pankaj Chowdhury, Rita Bahuguna Joshi, Ramshankar Katheria, Lallan Singh and Rahul Kaswan.
The Union Cabinet, which can have 81 members, currently has 53 ministers. This means 28 ministers can be added.