RANCHI: THE expansion of the Hemant Soren Cabinet is likely to take place only after proving majority in the House during a three-day special Assembly session between January 6 and 8. Sources claimed that JMM and Congress are yet to reach consensus over the sharing of ministerial berths resulting in the delay in the cabinet expansion. JMM wants six ministerial berths, while Congress is adamant on five ministers from its quota. Since one minister has already been announced from RJD quota, Congress or JMM will have to agree on one less seat, that is, five and four respectively. There can be a maximum of 12 ministers, including the Chief Minister in Jharkhand.
Sources in the Congress party also revealed that they will agree to four ministers provided they are also given the post of speaker. However, if the JMM wants to keep the post of the Speaker with them, then they will not settle for less than five ministers. Both the parties will sit together after the floor test and a final decision will be taken in this regard, they said. The JMM-Congress-RJD alliance bagged 47 seats in the 81-member state Assembly; JMM won 30 seats, Congress 16 and the RJD one.
Meanwhile, Chief Minister Soren white paper on current financial condition of the state will be issued soon so that people may know what his government has inherited from the previous regime. The CM claimed that strengthening the state’s financial management is a challenge because of the “huge misappropriation” of state exchequer by the preceding BJP government.
“To fulfill expectations of the people and implement welfare schemes, it is essential to strengthen the state’s economy,” said Soren, adding that the state will have to curb unnecessary expenditure and stop non-mandatory schemes.
JMM wants six ministerial berths, while Congress is adamant on five ministers from its quota.