With government sources disclosing the names of nine people who will take oath as ministers tomorrow, a surprise factor is the absence of any member of the BJP’s allies such as the JD(U) and the Shiv Sena from the list. Though top BJP leaders maintained silence on the development, sources in the party said the JD(U) and the Shiv Sena not figuring in the list was likely due to lack of a formula for representation which could satisfy all allies.
The Sena, with 18 Lok Sabha members against two from the JD(U), wanted its share of representation in line with that of the Nitish Kumar-led party, which would have meant several more berths for the Maharashtra party, a demand the BJP did not concede, the sources said. In the Rajya Sabha, the Sena has three members while the JD(U) has 10. Earlier in the day, Kumar claimed in Patna that no talks between the BJP and his party were held on the issue, while Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray said he had received no communication from the bigger ally.
Internal troubles in the AIADMK, which has been hit by a rebellion by the T T V Dhinakaran-led section, has proved to be a stumbling block in its joining the government. Nine new ministers including former IFS officer Hardeep Puri, ex-Mumbai Police chief Satyapal Singh and retired IAS officer Alphons Kannanthanam will be inducted into the Union Council of Ministers tomorrow as part of a major revamp by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The new faces include BJP MPs Ashwini Kumar Choubey (Bihar), Virendra Kumar (Madhya Pradesh) and Shiv Pratap Shukla (Uttar Pradesh). The others are Anant Kumar Hegde, Raj Kumar Singh, Hardeep Puri, Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, Satyapal Singh and Alphons Kannanthanam.