Non-performers in Madhya Pradesh cabinet may face axe
Buzz about cabinet reshuffle in BJP-ruled state; a few Scindia loyalist ministers could be divested of key portfolios
BHOPAL: Amid senior BJP leaders from Madhya Pradesh arriving in Delhi on Thursday to meet the party’s top brass, reportedly to discuss preparations for the 2023 Assembly polls in the state, there is a strong buzz of imminent cabinet reshuffle or expansion in the central Indian state. Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and state party chief VD Sharma are among those who will meet top saffron party leaders in the national capital.
According to BJP sources who hold key positions in the state unit, a few non-performing ministers could be dropped from the cabinet while some other non-performers, particularly loyalists of Union civil aviation minister Jyotiraditya Scindia, could be divested of some of the portfolios they have been holding for long. New faces, especially tribals, OBC and upper caste leaders, could be inducted as part of the BJP’s conscious efforts to reach out to every caste and section.
The non-performing ministers who might be dropped or divested of some crucial portfolios include tribal affairs minister Meena Singh, health and family welfare minister Dr Prabhuram Choudhary (one of the nine Scindia loyalists in the council of ministers), food and civil supplies minister Bisahulal Singh and environment minister HS Dang (two of the 22 former Congress MLAs who had brought down the 15-month-old Kamal Nath government in March 2020). Another Scindia loyalist minister Suresh Dhakad Rathkheda could also see his wings getting clipped.
Transport and revenue minister Govind Singh Rajput — another Scindia loyalist minister — could also lose one of his crucial portfolios. New faces likely to be inducted as ministers are Sulochana Rawat, a former tribal leader of the Congress who retained her seat on BJP ticket; Indore-II MLA Ramesh Mendola, who is considered close to Kailash Vijayvargiya; and a Brahmin or Thakur from Vindhya region.
A section wary of Scindia loyalists’ dominance
As per informed sources, there has been growing discomfort among a section of BJP over the dominance of Scindia loyalist ministers in the 25-month-old Shivraj Singh Chouhan 4.0 government. Knowing well that the West MP/Malwa Nimar and Vindhya regions are of critical importance for the party’s prospects in the 2023 polls, the BJP could have in store something big for both these regions in the possible reshuffle