Possible New Ministers And How They Place In BJP's Election Strategy

Three union ministers resigned late on Friday night to make way for new faces and, sources said, several more are likely to quit today.

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Possible New Ministers And How They Place In BJP's Election Strategy

The cabinet reshuffle is expected to take place on Saturday. (File)

New Delhi: 

Highlights

  1. Massive Cabinet reshuffle expected on Sunday
  2. New team will have at least two members from Nitish Kumar's JD (U)
  3. 3 ministers resigned Thursday, many more likely to quit today
While revamping his Cabinet, in a massive shake-up expected on Sunday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to factor in key assembly elections in several states ahead of the 2019 national election, when he will seek a second term.

The new team will also have at least two members from the BJP's new partner, the Janata Dal United of Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar - Ram Chandra Prasad Singh and Santosh Kushwaha are tipped to be ministers.

Three union ministers resigned late on Thursday night to make way for new faces and, sources said, several more are likely to quit today. The mega exercise is expected to fill key cabinet vacancies and also bring into the council of ministers, leaders from states where elections will be held soon.

Bhupendra Yadav, who is the BJP's man in-charge of Gujarat, is among those likely to be made a minister. BJP chief Amit Shah has set a target of winning 150 of the 182 seats in assembly elections due in the state by the end of the year and an A-list central team led by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley will shape election strategy.

Apart from the key role he plays, Bhupendra Yadav is also from Rajasthan, where elections will be held next year.
 
bjp gujarat in charge bhupendra yadav ani

Bhupendra Yadav, who is the BJP's man in-charge of Gujarat, is among those likely to be made a minister. (ANI)

The BJP's Suresh Angadi and Prahlad Joshi could be inducted as ministers. Both are from Karnataka, where the BJP hopes to oust the Congress next year to regain the only state in the south it has ruled.

Prahlad Singh Patel, who is from Madhya Pradesh, another state where elections will be held next year, could also be made a minister. Mr Patel has been a minister before in the government of Atal Bihari Vajpayee.

The name of BJP Rajya Sabha member from Maharashtra Vinay Sahasrabuddhe who is a party idealogue is doing the rounds as a possible new minister. As is that of Satyapal Singh, former police commissioner of Mumbai who defeated Uttar Pradesh politician Ajit Singh in his bastion Baghpat in the 2014 national election.

Senior Union ministers Uma Bharti, Rajiv Pratap Rudy and Sanjeev Balyan resigned late on Thursday evening. Junior minister for health Faggan Kulaste is likely to quit and so could another minister of state, Mahendra Pande, who has become the BJP's UP chief.

Kalraj Mishra, who is well over 75, the BJP's age limit for ministers is expected to resign. Despite his age, Mr Mishra had been retained with an eye on assembly elections in UP, which the BJP swept earlier this year.

Mr Balyan, sources said, is expected to be engaged in party work in Uttar Pradesh ahead of the 2019 parliamentary election, when the BJP hopes to replicate its 2014 performance - it had won 71 of the state's 80 Lok Sabha seats.

Mr Balyan is a Jat leader from Western UP and the induction of Satyapal Singh, also a Jat from the same belt, will balance his removal from the council of ministers.

Rajiv Pratap Rudy is also expected to be assigned a key organisational role. To keep his state Bihar represented, Buxar MP Ashwini Kumar Choubey could become a minister, sources said.

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