Narendra Modi inducts six new ministers

The expansion is being seen as the last one before the Assembly polls due to be held in Dec 2012.

Updated: Feb 02, 2011, 14:17 PM IST

Gandhinagar: Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra
Modi Wednesday expanded his Cabinet by inducting six new
ministers, taking the ministry strength to 27.

Governor Kamla administered the oath of office to the new
ministers at a function held at Raj Bhavan here.

Those who were inducted into the ministry are Liladhar
Vaghela, Ranjit Gilitwala, Mohan Kundaria, Jitu Sukhadia,
Ishwarbhai Patel and Jaydrathsinh Parmar.

Sukhadia is from Vadodara, Jaydrathsinh Parmar from Halol
and Ishwarbhai Patel from Ankleshwar. All the three places in
the central Gujarat region are considered as a stronghold of
Congress.

According to experts, the cabinet expansion has been done
with an eye on the state Assembly elections, due in 2012.

Kundaria is an MLA from Saurashtra belonging to powerful
Patel community. To give a better representation to south
Gujarat, Ranjit Gilitwala was also taken in. While Vaghela
represents north Gujarat.

This is seen as a last expansion of the Modi government
before the Assembly elections.

This is the second expansion of the Modi`s cabinet in the
last five months. Before the crucial local self governing
bodies elections, Modi had expanded his cabinet on August 21
and inducted four ministers, taking its strength to 21.

Party sources said Modi is also likely to appoint leaders
to the post of state boards and corporations soon.

PTI