MUMBAI: The widely expected portfolio allocation among newly inducted ministers of the Uddhav Thackeray government did not take place on Tuesday though the allocation of residential bungalows and offices was completed. Most of the state Congress leaders were in Delhi to discuss and finalise the portfolios that the party is expected to get.
Sources said the announcement of portfolios would be made once the Congress finalizes the names of its members for the various portfolios it has been assigned.Senior NCP leader Ajit Pawar, who is expected to be inducted as one of the Deputy Chief Minister’s suddenly cancelled his programs at Jalna and Shirdi on Tuesday morning and decided to stay back in Mumbai. That had led to speculations that the portfolios may be announced on Tuesday.
It was later said that if the Congress leaders returned to Mumbai, the portfolio announcements could even be made the late evening. There was no further development.It is said that the Shiv Sena and Congress were keen on immediate cabinet expansion but the NCP sought more time to finalise its candidate for the deputy CM’s post.
NCP chief Sharad Pawar was attending the Parliament session, which also led to speculations that the portfolio allocation might even be postponed to December 12, which happens to be his birthday. When quizzed in Delhi, he declined to comment on whether Ajit Pawar would get the deputy chief minister’s post.Officials, however, confided that the ‘Devgiri’ bungalow, which Ajit Pawar had occupied during UPA rule between 1999 and 2014 in his capacity as Deputy CM, has been reserved again in his name.