New Delhi: An update on the reshuffle of the Union Cabinet is in the pipeline. Sources close to the development have informed that the cabinet expansion will be on Wednesday at 6pm-Thursday, July 8, instead of July 7. PM Narendra Modi is also giving special attention to appointing young leaders to his cabinet. An emphasis is being placed on those with education, especially PhD holders, MBAs, and postgraduates in various fields.
Preference will be given to those with experience in administration and governance in state agencies. The Dalits and the OBC community will also receive record representation, while the focus will also be on the upliftment of the backward classes. According to sources, the cabinet expansion is being considered as a balancing act to bridge the gap between New Delhi and the rest of the country.
By bringing in young political leaders, the expansion of the cabinet may bring down the average age of the Central cabinet. Legislators from underrepresented regions will be given a place in the cabinet to bridge the gap between the regions and New Delhi. Several sources predict that the JD(U), which recently won the Bihar Assembly Elections, will get a seat in the new Cabinet after returning to the NDA in 2017. Sushil Modi, former Deputy CM of Bihar, is also expected to join PM Modi’s new cabinet.
Candidates for cabinet expansion
In light of the upcoming Uttar Pradesh Assembly Elections, sources report that several leaders have been invited to the national capital to ensure their representation. Anupriya Patel, leader of the Apna Dal(S), is one of the frontrunners from UP. The BJP’s Rajya Sabha MP, Jyotiraditya Scindia, who defected from the Congress last year and helped the party regain power in Madhya Pradesh, is likely to be given a ministerial berth. Narayan Rane, former CM of Maharashtra and a steady ally of the BJP, is likely to gain cabinet posts.
Former Assam CM Sarbananda Sonowal is also a candidate for the cabinet berth. BJP MP Tirath Singh Rawat, who resigned as Chief Minister of Uttarakhand, is also expected to be appointed to the cabinet. Dilip Ghosh and Locket Chatterjee, both from West Bengal, might also be included in the reshuffled Cabinet. Jamyang Tsering Namgyal, a member of the Lok Sabha from Ladakh, is also likely to be appointed to the cabinet. The Union Council of Ministers currently has 53 members, including Prime Minister Modi, but only 27 more can be added. Since the NDA government took power in May 2019, this will be the first cabinet expansion exercise.