Bengaluru: The expansion of the H.D. Kumaraswamy-led cabinet, primarily aimed at reinforcing the Congress-JD(S) coalition which has had a shaky run in the past few months, will take place Friday afternoon, with the induction of two new ministers while the possibility of induction of a third minister under the JD(S) quota is not ruled out.
Independent MLA Nagesh and the lone KPJP MLA R Shankar, who are supporting the coalition, will be sworn-in even as speculative reports did the rounds Thursday evening that MLC B.M. Farooq, a businessman-politico aligned with the JD(S), could make it to the third vacant slot.
Governor Vajubhai Vala will administer the oath of office to the new ministers at 1 pm at Raj Bhavan.
Of the total 34 ministerial berths in Karnataka, the Congress and JD(S) have shared 22 and 12 respectively with three posts currently vacant, two of
JD(S) and one of the Congress.
Shankar had served as minister during the initial days of the Kumaraswamy government. He was dropped from the cabinet during the rejig in December last year, following which he, along with Nagesh, sided with the BJP and had written to the Governor, withdrawing support to the government.
As the BJP failed in its alleged attempts to topple the coalition and form the government, the two lawmakers subsequently moved closer to the ruling coalition.
Shankar is likely to join the Congress on becoming minister.
The expansion, originally scheduled for June 12, was rescheduled to Friday as a three-day state mourning was announced due to the death of Jnanpith awardee and writer Girish Karnad on Monday.
According to sources, a cabinet rejig is also on the cards after some time, during which a few ministers will be asked to step down to make way for others including disgruntled legislators....