Maharashtra Cabinet expansion news: The newly-elected Maharashtra government led by Chief Minister Eknath Shinde is planning for Cabinet expansion. If sources are to be believed, the expansion will happen in two phases - before and after the Presidential election which is scheduled to be held on July 18.
The BJP, which wheeled back to power, after forging an alliance with Shiv Sena is expected to get important portfolios, sources said. In the first phase, the Shiv Sena's Shinde faction and some BJP leaders will be administered the oath, sources added.
Putting an end to the over a week-long political turmoil in Maharashtra, Shinde took oath as chief minister of the state on June 30. Fadnavis, after initial reluctance, took oath as deputy chief minister.
According to sources, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is likely to keep key portfolios like revenue, home and finance with it, while the Shinde camp of Shiv Sena may get urban development, and irrigation, and other departments.
The BJP is likely to get a larger share of cabinet berths given its numbers in the new government.
The Shinde camp-BJP government won the floor test with the support of 164 MLAs. The Shinde faction has the support of 50 MLAs, and the BJP has 106 MLAs. The government has support of several independent MLAs and other smaller parties as well.
Sources said, BJP may get 28 ministerial posts, out of which 20 will be cabinet and 8 could be ministers of state. Whereas, the Eknath Shinde camp may get 14 ministerial posts out of which 8 will be cabinet berths and 6 ministers of state.
Earlier on Tuesday, Deputy CM Devendra Fadnavis had in Nagpur told reporters that the Cabinet expansion will be done soon and he would hold talks with the CM to discuss the distribution of ministerial portfolios.
As per the Constitution, the Council of Ministers, including the Chief Minister, in any state shall not exceed 15 per cent of the strength of the Legislative Assembly. Accordingly, the number of ministers in Maharashtra cannot exceed 42.
Sources say that Shiv Sena has filed a case in the Supreme Court regarding the disqualification of rebel MLAs, which will be heard on July 11.
In such a situation, the Shinde and Fadnavis government does not want to take any risk. However, BJP and Shinde faction have prepared the template of ministers in the cabinet expansion.
According to sources, Chief Minister Eknath Shinde may take the Ministry of Urban Development and MSRDC. Along with this, Eknath Shinde may also take care of the ongoing major projects in Maharashtra which include Mumbai's Coastal Road, Trans Harbor Link, Metro Rail, Nagpur Samriddhi Highway and Mumbai Ahmedabad Bullet Train.
While Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis may keep the Home Ministry and Finance Ministry with him. Along with this, ministries like Revenue Department, PWD, Home Construction, Electricity Department, Medical Education Ministry, Dairy Ministry, Tourism Ministry and Food and Civil Supplies can also remain with the BJP.
Maharashtra BJP President Chandrakant Dada Patil, Girish Mahajan, Radhakrishna Vikhe Patil, Praveen Darekar, Ashish Shelar, Sanjay Kute, Chandrashekhar Bawankule, Sudhir Mungantiwar are possible names among the MLAs who can be made ministers from the BJP side.
While, Gulabrao Patil, Uday Samant, Dadaji Bhuse, Shambhuraje Desai, Abdul Sattar, Bacchu Kadu, Rajendra Patil, Deepak Kesarkar, Sanjay Shirsat and Bharat Gogavale are among the probables from the Eknath Shinde faction.
The Shinde faction may be given portfolios like transport, mining, industry, environment and school ministries.
Ministries BJP likely to get
- Home Department
- Finance Department
- Skill Development
- Medical Education
- Village Development
- Water Resources
- Law & Judiciary
Ministries Eknath Shinde (camp) likely to get
- Urban Development
- GAD General Administration
- MSRDC Road Construction
- Education Ministry
- Water Supply
- Disaster Management
- Social Justice
How many ministers can there be in Centre and state governments
Article 164 (1A), the total number of Ministers, including the Chief Minister, in the Council of Ministers in a State shall not exceed fifteen per cent. of the total number of members of the Legislative Assembly of that State: Provided that the number of Ministers, including the Chief Minister in a State shall not be less than twelve.