Friday, 22 September, 2017

Cabinet reshuffle talk gains momentum

Union Minister Rajiv Pratap Rudy resigns Union Minister Rajiv Pratap Rudy resigns
Garry Little | 06 September, 2017, 09:23

While Mishra was a Cabinet minister for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, Dattatreya was Minister of State (Independent Charge) of Labour and Employment and Rudy handled Skill Development and Entrepreneurship in similar capacity.

Though the two men had met the previous week, at this session, Mr Rudy was politely told to quit; he was assured his services will be used by the party as it campaigns for crucial states.

Defence minister Arun Jaitley had hinted today that he might be giving up the defence ministry.

Ahead of the likely Cabinet reshuffle over the weekend, five members of the Union Council of Ministers (CoM) resigned on Thursday evening.

New faces are likely to be inducted into the cabinet, including some from alliance partners like the ruling regional Janata Dal (United) party of the eastern state of Bihar.

Kalraj Mishra was today dropped from the Union Cabinet.

Rajiv Pratap Rudy met BJP chief Amit Shah on Thursday after which resignation decision was conveyed to the media.

News reports said the cabinet reshuffle is expected to come before Sunday when Prime Minister Narendra Modi leaves for a BRICS summit in China.

Talk of a reshuffle gained ground after the BJP last month chose its senior leader M Venkaiah Naidu as its vice-presidential candidate.

After meeting Shah earlier in the day, Jaitley suggested that he may not hold charge of the Defence Ministry for long.

"At least not for very long", Jaitley said in response to questions on how long he would continue as Defence Minister.

The new Cabinet is also likely to see the JD (U)'s Ram Chandra Prasad SIngh and Santosh Kushwaha being included. Prabhu may be given the charge of the environment ministry.

Prime Minister Modi had himself conveyed this over the last few days to the ministers and assigned future roles for them, sources said. Even during the last reshuffle in July past year, sources said, ministers were asked to submit their resignations to the party leadership first.

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