In a categorical statement that put an end to speculation over the creation of a Deputy Chief Minister’s post in the State Cabinet, AICC general secretary in-charge of Karnataka Digvijay Singh said: “Cabinet expansion is the discretion of the Chief Minister.”
Speaking to presspersons after a two-hour-long coordination committee meeting at the party office here on Tuesday, Mr. Singh said: “The party high command will not interfere in the Ministry expansion.”
While the Council of Ministers could comprise up to 34 Ministers it now has 30. Chief Minister Siddaramaiah had already indicated that four vacancies would be filled. Party sources added that “the process will be completed by next month”.
The coordination committee, which met for the first time after the Lok Sabha elections, has reportedly discussed names of a few legislators to be inducted into the Council of Ministers. Mr. Siddaramaiah is expected to visit New Delhi in the next couple of days to formally finalise candidates to be sworn in. Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee president G. Parameshwara is expected to be inducted as a Cabinet Minister, according to sources.