Modi 2: Exercise for formation of new cabinet begins; more ministers likely from Odisha & Karnataka

The process of cabinet formation for Modi 2 government has begun and there have been exchanges between the BJP and RSS brass on a provisional first list of probables.

Speculation is rife about who will make it to the new team. Modi had told a meeting of the council of ministers at the BJP headquarters last week that some of them may not get another term but that the party will secure their talent — an indirect hint to them being moved to the BJP organisation.

BJP leaders were divided on whether party chief Amit Shah will join the Modi cabinet. Some of the top leaders said Shah had not given any hint that he will abandon the post of party chief.

The new Modi team is likely to have four ministers from West Bengal (the last ministry had two), where BJP has won 18 seats out of the total 42. Higher representation is also likely from Odisha and Karnataka, sources said.

With the party failing to open its account in Tamil Nadu and Kerala, there could be some faces from South India as well. Party sources said the number of women ministers may go up in the new team.

NDA partners are said to be pitching for ministerial berths and plum portfolios though BJP has a clear majority on its own. JDU and Shiv Sena are likely to get three berths.