New Delhi: Union Ministers Ajay Maken and CP Joshi have resigned ahead of the Cabinet reshuffle on Monday. President Pranab Mukherjee on Sunday accepted both the resignations.
Meanwhile, UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi and Congress leader Ahmed Patel met on Sunday ahead of the reshuffle.
Sources said that more ministers are set to resign in the next 24 hours which also includes Jairam Ramesh. The ministers will be taking up Congress party posts to build on their 2014 strategy.
Young leaders are likely to be given important portfolios in the cabinet. Ministers holding two portfolios like Anand Sharma may be divested of some responsibilities.
The reshuffle in the Council of Ministers is expected to be the last one in UPA II with Lok Sabha elections less than an year away.
With the DMK and the Trinamool Congress withdrawing support from UPA government within less than a year, a number of slots vacated by them are yet to filled up. Five ministers of DMK had resigned on March 20 after which there has been no rejig in the Union Council of Ministers. They were holding Minister of State position in Finance, Commerce and Industry, Health and Family Welfare and Social Justice ministries. The only cabinet minister they had was MK Alagiri who was in-charge of Chemical and Fertilisers.
Two cabinet ministers of DMK had resigned earlier - Dayanidhi Maran and A Raja, the latter in connection with the 2G telecom spectrum allocation scam. Some ministers may also be drafted them for organisational works ahead of the next Lok Sabha polls, the sources said.
A reshuffle of the party organisation in the AICC, which is long overdue, is also being firmed up. Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad, who is also the general secretary of Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh, could be given fresh responsibilities.
There are indications that AICC general secretary and media department in-charge Janardan Dwivedi may give up the charge of the media, a job he had done for six years. The name of a number of party leaders, including Ambika Soni and Digvijaya Singh, are doing rounds for the post. Some of the incharges of the states are also likely to be reshuffled.
With Additional Inputs from PTI
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