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Punjab

Posted at: Apr 17, 2018, 1:27 AM; last updated: Apr 17, 2018, 1:27 AM (IST)

CM to meet Rahul, Cabinet expansion likely on April 19

Announcement soon

  • After checking the availability of Punjab Governor VP Singh Badnore between April 18 and 23, the date would be announced

Rajmeet Singh

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, April 16

Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh is likely to expand Cabinet on April 19, it is learnt. The development is significant in the wake of speculation that the Cabinet expansion might get delayed due to the pending judgment in the Navjot Singh Sidhu road rage case.

Though there is no official confirmation, it is believed that the CM has scheduled a meeting with AICC president Rahul Gandhi over the next couple of days.

Capt Amarinder has already expressed his keenness to expand the Cabinet at the earliest. After checking the availability of Punjab Governor VP Singh Badnore between April 18 and 23, the date would be announced, it is learnt.

A senior party leader said Asha Kumari met the CM in Chandigarh on April 11 to discuss the names. The CM has already hinted at distributing most of his 42 portfolios.

After the resignation of Power and Irrigation Minister Rana Gurjit Singh, nine Cabinet berths are vacant. Besides expansion, shuffling of portfolios is also expected.

“It will be better if the Cabinet is expanded before the Shahkot bypoll notification,” said a senior PPCC leader.

Sources said due representation would be given to Hindus, Dalits and OBCs. Maintaining a mix of youth and talent, three new faces from the Rahul brigade — Kuljit Nagra, Vijay Inder Singla and Randeep Nabha — are the frontrunners.

Three-time Mohali MLA Balbir Singh Sidhu could emerge as the dark horse among Jat faces.

Urmar MLA Sangat Singh Gilzian may also find a place in the Cabinet as an OBC representative. Senior-most Cabinet minister Brahm Mohindra may be given more responsibilities.

From Majha region, there is pressure on the party to induct Sukhjinder Randhawa and Amritsar MLA Raj Kumar Verka.

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