Saturday, January 28, 2006

Cabinet reshuffle and expansion on Jan 29

Cabinet reshuffle and expansion on Jan 29: "According to sources, Prime Minister will retain the External Affairs portfolio.

Earlier, there was considerable speculation that the crucial portfolio could either go to Andhra Pradesh Governor Sushil Kumar Shinde or veteran Congress leader Karan Singh. Shinde is tipped to be the Power Minister.

Congress Spokesperson Anand Sharma may be appointed the Minister of State for External Affairs. Senior Maharashtra Congress leader Murli Deora is slated to get the Petroleum Ministry.

Congress leader Ambika Soni is likely to get the Ministry of Tourism and Culture.

Saifuddin Soz, who was a Minister in the United Front government in mid-90s, may get the Water Resources Ministry. D Purandeswari, N T Rama Rao's daughter may be appointed as Minister of State for Human Resources Development.

Shibu Soren, who resigned when he became the Jharkhand chief minister for a brief period last year, is likely to be re-inducted and given the Coal portfolio that he held earlier.

Vyalar Ravi, Mohsina Kidwai, GK Vasan, Ajay Maken and Veerappa Moily are likely to be the new faces in the cabinet.

However, there is not going to be any change in key portfolios of Finance held by P Chidambaram, Defence (Pranab Mukherjee) and Home (Shivraj Patil)."

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