New Delhi: The new council of ministers will meet Prime Minister Narendra Modi at 4:30 today, according to an All India Radio news report.
They will later take the oath of office and secrecy at 7PM at Rashtrapati Bhavan. As many 6,000-8,000 people are expected at the grand ceremony. Heads of government in BIMSTEC countries and families of BJP workers killed in West Bengal during elections have been invited to be part of the swearing-in ceremony.
True to Modi’s style, there has been utmost secrecy on the Cabinet composition. Former Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Wednesday opted out of the team due to health reasons. He had undergone a kidney transplant last year and was early this year diagnosed as suffering from a cancer of the tissue.
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) President Amit Shah is expected to be part of the Cabinet. So are Smriti Irani, Prakash Javadekar, Sadananda Gowda, Piyush Goyal and Suresh Prabhu. Allies like Shiv Sena, Ram Vilas Paswan’s Lok Janshakti Party and Nitish Kumar’s Janata Dal (United) are also likely to get berths.
There is much talk on whether Shah will be part of the Cabinet since he is also the party president. According to reports, former health minister J.P. Nadda is ahead in race against ex-oil minister Dharmendra Pradhan to be the new BJP president.
Irani, after her spectacular win against Congress president Rahul Gandhi, is expected to get an important ministry. She was in charge of textiles and information and broadcasting ministries in the first Modi government.