Allies not touched in reshuffle because of Assembly polls: Govt

Government on Thursday said the UPA allies were not covered in the reshuffle of the Union Council of Ministers in view of the upcoming Assembly elections in various states and an expansion can take place after the Budget session.

New Delhi: Government on Thursday said the UPA
allies were not covered in the reshuffle of the Union Council
of Ministers in view of the upcoming Assembly elections in
various states and an expansion can take place after the
Budget session of Parliament.

"It was not that big a reshuffle. Only the portfolios
were shuffled," Information and Broadcasting Minister Ambika
Soni said here while briefing media on the Cabinet meeting.
She noted that UPA allies were not covered in yesterday`s
reshuffle as it was not apt to do so in view of the upcoming
Assembly elections.

Assembly elections are due to take place in a few months
in West Bengal, Kerala, Assam, Tamil Nadu and Puducherry.

Soni said an expansion could take place after the Budget
session of Parliament as she referred to Prime Minister
Manmohan Singh`s statement in this regard.

Singh had said that a "expansive" reshuffle would be
undertaken after the Budget session.

The Budget session will begin on February 21 and is
expected to go on till May.
To questions on the rejig undertaken yesterday, Soni said
it would help bring new thinking and experience on the basis
of specific capabilities of various Ministers.

"Every reshuffle has a benefit," she said, adding
yesterday`s exercise would give a new chance to various
Ministers.

PTI

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