Two cabinet berths vacant, Uttarakhand CM to book names with Shah approvaldehradun Updated: Sep 18, 2017 20:46 IST
BJP chief Amit Shah is arriving in Dehradun on Tuesday. He will hold meeting with chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat (above).(HT File)
Chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat may finalise names for the two ministerial berths lying vacant in his 10-member Cabinet with the consent of BJP chief Amit Shah during his two-day visit to Dehradun beginning Tuesday, party insiders said.
“During his visit, our party chief would discuss all kinds of issues,” said state BJP general secretary Naresh Bansal, when asked if Shah could give his nod to fill the two Cabinet berths lying vacant for the past six months.
The Cabinet berths have been lying vacant since Rawat constituted his 10-member Cabinet following his nomination to the chief minister’s post on March 18 after the BJP’s landslide victory in the assembly polls. The party has a total 57 legislators in the assembly, the highest since Uttarakhand was carved out of Uttar Pradesh in 2000.
When Rawat constituted his Cabinet, he left two berths vacant due to political compulsions — there were many among the remaining 47 BJP legislators vying for the coveted positions.
Rawat cannot accommodate more than two legislators owing to the constitutional obligation. According to the constitutional norms, he cannot accommodate more than 15% of the total 70 members elected to the House in his Cabinet.
Most of the remaining legislators, who were left out in the Cabinet formation, have been sulking. Supporters of some of them like that of former Speaker Harbans Kapoor even organised demonstrations demanding that the chief minister “accommodate” their leaders in the Cabinet.
With so many claimants vying for the two Cabinet berths, Rawat preferred not to fill them. But the delay is brewing tension within the party, an insider said hoping that Shah would help resolve the contentious issue.
“I believe that our party chief would clear the two names for the twin Cabinet berths lying vacant for such a long time,” he said, adding that his (Shah) decision would be acceptable to all.