The buzz about a Union cabinet reshuffle is growing louder and is expected to be considered after Makar Sankranti on January 14. The biggest pressure is coming from the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP’s) alliance partner, the Janata Dal (United) or JD (U) (which, by the way, is considered as the singular reason for the BJP's loss in Jharkhand). Though there is an uncertainty on the exact number of berths to be allocated to the JD (U), sources said that this ally may get three portfolios — all ministers of state, but one of them could be with independent charge.
The names of JD (U) MPs — Rajiv Ranjan Singh alias Lallan Singh and Ramchandra Prasad Singh as front-runners and those of Santosh Kushwaha and C P Chandravanshi as other possible choices — are doing the rounds. The party had decided to opt out of the Union Cabinet after the Lok Sabha results were announced last year.
Welcoming an old warhorse back
After a spectacular defeat in the Jharkhand Assembly elections, a reshuffle of the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP’s) state unit appears to be on the cards. Clearly, it has learnt that having a non-tribal chief minister in the state won’t not work. The latest is that the BJP is very keen to invite back into the party, Babulal Marandi, once its tribal face and an RSS functionary who left the party former his own Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (JVM). Both the JVM MLAs are said to be in touch with the Congress to negotiate an entry into that party. Marandi is not denying that he might return to the mother party (minus the MLAs) which the BJP is ready to accept.