The much-awaited expansion of the Telangana cabinet is expected to take place in the first week of February, according to a Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) leader with knowledge of the matter.The TRS leader said chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao hinted at this during his interaction with governor ESL Narasimhan at Raj Bhavan on Saturday.According to the TRS leader, Rao indicated that the expansion could be either on February 3 or 6, as both are said to be “auspicious” days. “He has commenced exercise in this regard and has been talking to senior party leaders about the composition of the cabinet,” he said.Rao, who returned to power for a second successive term in December assembly elections, took oath as the chief minister on December 13 along with just one minister Mohammad Mahmud Ali, who was given the home portfolio. Since then, he has been dodging the cabinet expansion stating that there were no auspicious days until the completion of Sankranti festival on January 14.There were talks that he would take up cabinet expansion on January 18, when the first session of the assembly began, but he deferred his plans again because he was busy making arrangements for a five-day religious function held at his farmhouse in Erravelli village of Siddipet district from January 21 to 25. “Now he has found time and he wants to have a proper cabinet before the commencement of the budget session of the state assembly in the second week of February,” the TRS leader said.The total strength of the Telangana cabinet should not be more than 18, including the chief minister. It would mean, KCR has to fill up 16 vacancies. However, it is learnt that KCR wants to induct eight to 10 ministers in the first phase.