Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is scheduled to meet President Pratibha Patil on Monday (Jan 17) evening and is expected to discuss about the possible cabinet reshuffle ahead of Budget session which will be held in Feb 2011.
Singh had also met Congress President Sonia Gandhi recently and media reports suggested that the duo had already discussed about the issue (cabinet reshuffle) which would be the first after the UPA-II came to power in May 2009.
The possible new cabinet:
- There are some vacancies including that created by the resignation of A Raja, Prithviraj Chavan and Shashi Tharoor.
- TR Baalu or EV Elangovan could get a Cabinet berth from DMK quota.
- According some sources, no representation would be three in three states in the Union ministry and the three states are - Chhattisgarh, Goa and Manipur.
- Telecom portfolio, presently with Kapil Sibal would remain with the Congress.
- Jyotiradiya Scindia may be inducted as the Minister of State for External Affairs.
- Trinamool Congress can get one more Minister of State berth.
- Cabinet minister from Uttar Pradesh, Salman Khursheed can be upgraded.
- More surprises are expected from the reshuffle as Sharad Pawar may give up Food and Consumer Affairs Ministry and Civil Aviation Minister Praful Patel could be elevated.
The news about possible cabinet reshuffle clearly showed that Congress led UPA government, which has been entangled with several corruption charges, is very much keen to clean up its tainted image.