Union Minister Rajiv Pratap Rudy resigns, triggers speculation on Modi Cabinet reshuffle
Ahead of impending reshuffle in the Union Cabinet, Minister of State for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship Rajiv Pratap Rudy on Thursday resigned from his post. Rudy met Prime Minister Narendra Modi around 8 p.m. and put in his papers, IANS reported.
According to the sources, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) President Amit Shah earlier in the day met Rudy and asked him to resign. Rudy, a BJP MP from Saran in Bihar, held Independent Charge of the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship. He is likely to be given some responsibility in the party organisation.
Shah held a meeting with some other senior ministers at his residence in the morning and met Modi later in the day.
Besides, Minister for Water Resources Uma Bharti, MSME Minister Kalraj Mishra, MoS for Water Resources Sanjiv Baliyan and MoS for Health and Family Welfare Faggan Singh Kulaste have also offered to resign, sources said.
Bharti has offered to quit on health grounds.
Mishra, who had met Shah today is well above 75 years, the age bar the party has informally set for ministers.
Earlier in the day, Union minister Mahendra Nath Pandey was appointed Uttar Pradesh BJP president in place of Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya, creating one more vacancy in the Council of Ministers.
Sources said Modi is likely to induct new faces, including those from the JD(U) and AIADMK, into his council of ministers. AIADMK's Thambi Durai and K Venugopal are being seen as among likely representatives of their party in the Cabinet if the Tamil Nadu party joins the Modi government. At least two members of the JD(U) are also likely to join.
New faces from the BJP that could be inducted in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's Cabinet are - Himanta Biswa Sarma, Satyapal Singh, Maheish Girri and Santosh Kushwaha.
The oath taking ceremony of new ministers is likely to take place on September 2, sources said. The president is scheduled to leave for Tirupati tomorrow. As of now nothing has been communicated to Rashtrapati Bhawan, as per sources.
There are several vacancies in the government while some senior ministers, including Arun Jaitley and Harsh Vardhan, are holding additional portfolios.
Earlier in the day, Union Minister Arun Jaitley said he does not expect to continue holding dual charge of finance and defence for very long. Jaitley is among the ministers holding dual charge and it is said that the reshuffle may involve lessening the burdens of such ministers.