The much-awaited Karnataka Cabinet expansion took place on Wednesday with the induction of seven new ministers. In the third expansion of the 17-month-old ministry seven MLAs - MTB Nagaraj, Umesh Katti, Aravind Limbavali, Murugesh Nirani, R Shankar, CP Yogeeshwara, Angara S - took oath as ministers. Governor Vajubhai Vala administered the oath of office and secrecy to the new members who were inducted into the Cabinet at the Glass House of Raj Bhavan.
Yediyurappa had finalised the expansion at a meeting with top BJP leaders, including party chief JP Nadda and Union Home Minister Amit Shah in New Delhi last week.
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Yediyurappa assumed charge in July 2019 after the collapse of the Congress-JDS government in the wake of a revolt by 17 MLAs of the coalition partners.
Bengaluru: MTB Nagaraj, Umesh Katti, Aravind Limbavali, Murugesh Nirani, R Shankar, CP Yogeeshwara, Angara S inducted into BS Yediyurappa cabinet today https://t.co/OuZea8pmxo pic.twitter.com/WiTmGmSORI— ANI (@ANI) January 13, 2021
Yediyurappa, who had been planning the expansion for several months, had on Monday said Nadda and party General Secretary in-charge of state Arun Singh will be invited for the swearing-in.
According to the sources, Katti had been picked up by the party leaders under Lingayat quota, Limbavali had been rewarded for his planning and execution in toppling the Congress government in Madhya Pradesh, C.P. Yogeshwara too got his berth as a reward for working in tandem with Yediyurappa and his team to topple the Congress-JD(S) coalition government in Karnataka.
Nagaraj and Shankar who had defected along with 17 legislators in 2019, were almost certain to make it to Cabinet. Shankar had not only defected but also allowed the ruling BJP to field its candidate from Ranebennur seat which he had won as an independent in 2018.
Sources added that Nagaraj who is billed as Karnataka's richest politician, was rewarded the berth despite his defeat in the bypolls that took place after he defected from the Congress.
(With IANS inputs)