PM indicates he is open to idea of cabinet reshuffle

Amid talk of a reshuffle-cum- expansion of the Union Council of Ministers soon, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Tuesday indicated that he was open to the idea.

Updated: May 31, 2011, 21:36 PM IST

New Delhi: Amid talk of a reshuffle-cum-
expansion of the Union Council of Ministers soon, Prime
Minister Manmohan Singh on Tuesday indicated that he was open to
the idea.

"I will apply my mind when I get time," was his brief
comment when asked about the much-talked about reshuffle amid
reports that it may take place in the next fortnight.

The talk in ruling circles is that the exercise could
take place either by June 15 or early July, ahead of of the
monsoon session of Parliament.

While the contours of the exercise were not known, Singh
had made it clear after the cabinet reshuffle in January that
"a more expansive" exercise will take place after the budget
session.

The possibility has brightened after the victory of
Mamata Banerjee, who became the Chief Minister of West Bengal,
and resigned as Railway Minister at the Centre.

The talk in the political circle is that her party
colleague Mukul Roy, who has been given additional charge of
Minister of State in the Railway, will be elevated to the
Cabinet rank in the Railway ministry.

Ministers like Kapil Sibal are holding more than one
portfolio. While there are some vacancies including that
created by the resignation of A Raja in the wake of the 2G
spectrum scam and Prithviraj Chavan, who became Chief Minister
of Maharashtra.

Congress sources discounted the possibility of Karnataka
Governor HR Bhardwaj being brought to the Centre. Bhardwaj
was Law Minister in UPA-1.

PTI