PM Modi holds meeting with Shah, Santhosh amid buzz of Cabinet expansion

PM Modi holds meeting with Shah, Santhosh amid buzz of Cabinet expansion
File photo of Narendra Modi

New Delhi, July 5: Prime Minister Narendra Modi has held marathon meetings with Home Minister Amit Shah and BJP general secretary (organisation) B L Santhosh in what is being seen as the final touches being given to the details of a likely expansion of the Union Cabinet.

Sources said Shah and Santhosh confabulated with Modi at his residence for several hours on Sunday amid a "strong possibility" that the Cabinet reshuffle may happen very soon.

Some sources said the swearing-in may happen as early as Wednesday. However, there was no official word on it.

If the prime minister goes ahead with the exercise, he will be expanding his Council of Ministers for the first time since assuming the charge in May 2019 for his second innings.

BJP leaders Sarbananda Sonowal, the former Assam chief minister who made way for Himanta Biswa Sarma in the state, Jyotiraditya Scindia and Sushil Modi are seen as strong ministerial probables amid indications that some allies of the saffron party may also get berths.

The states which will go to the assembly polls early next year, including the all-important Uttar Pradesh, may figure high.

West Bengal may also see its representation in the Union Council of Ministers go up, the sources said.

It is believed that the BJP's allies like JD(U) and Apna Dal can also get representation.

Presently, Republican Party leader Ramdas Athawale, a junior minister, is the only ally in the government after parties like the Shiv Sena and the Shiromani Akali Dal severed ties with the BJP.

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