Cabinet reshuffle: AIADMK may not be part of it, say sources

Cabinet reshuffle: AIADMK may not be part of it, say sources

According to sources, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is likely to re-shuffle his Cabinet on Sunday before leaving for China to attend BRICS summit.

With media reports suggesting a possible reshuffle of the Union Cabinet, senior All India Anna Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam leader and Deputy Lok Sabha Speaker M Thambidurai met Bharatiya Janata Party president Amit Shah in New Delhi on Thursday evening. The earlier Cabinet reshuffles were effected in November 2014 and July 2016.

A simple "P and N" formula - where "P" stands for "Positive and "N" is 'Negative" - will decide who stays in Narendra Modi's council of ministers and who goes out. Yet, the reshuffle, which has been confirmed for Sunday, will have the bearing of two major factors: the coming assembly elections in several states and 2019 Lok Sabha elections as no other reshuffle is likely before the next Lok Sabha polls. Railways Minister Suresh Prabhu is likely shift into Environment Ministry.

Ministers of State Rajiv Pratap Rudy, Sanjiv Kumar Balyan, Faggan Singh Kulaste and Mahendra Nath Pandey resigned late on Thursday night.

Apart from them, Union Minister Giriraj Singh is also expected to quit after a nudge from the party to pave way for the Cabinet reshuffle.

As certain important departments do not have a full-time Minister, the Bharatiya Janata Party has chose to expand the cabinet at the sooner. However, NDTV claimed the Dravidian party would find no place in the government in the rejig scheduled for Sunday. Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, who is now holding dual ministries - finance and defence - will let go of defence.

Former Mumbai police commissioner and Baghpat MP Satya Pal Singh, may be brought as a Union minister.

The AIADMK and JDU which joined the NDA would also be getting prominence in the Cabinet. However, while Pawar seems undecided on dumping his alliance with the Congress in favour of the BJP for now, the factional feuds within the AIADMK in Tamil Nadu have forced the BJP to put the plan of inducting a member of the party as a central minister on hold. The formula consists of and excel sheet with performance ratings of the existing ministers of the Modi Cabinet.

Meanwhile, the three-day coordination meeting of the Sangh Parivar began today with top leaders of the saffron combine including RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat and BJP president Amit Shah in attendance.

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