In his first comments after being asked to resign as minister, Rajiv Pratap Rudy told NDTV that “It’s not my decision, it’s the decision of the party, and I will follow (it).” Similarly, Sanjeev Balyan, who was Water Resources Minister, said that upon being asked, he “immediately sent a one-sentence resignation. He added he “does not know the reason for seeking my resignation” but said he was happy to comply with his party’s order.
Mr Rudy, who had a long meeting with BJP chief Amit Shah last week, was asked to quit as Minister for Skill Development. So far, three union ministers, all from the BJP, have stepped down ahead of a cabinet reshuffle that is expected to take place tomorrow before Prime Minister Narendra Modi leaves for China on Sunday. Mr Rudy explained that Mr Shah, who met him again last evening, “had taken a decision and conveyed the decision.”
When asked if he believes he will now be assigned to play a big role in the BJP’s campaigning for approaching elections in key states like Karnataka and Gujarat, the 55-year-old said, “Let us see…at this time, I have just left my position.”
The cabinet reshaping – the third in as many years – is expected to include two ministers from Bihar Chief Minisrer Nitish Kumar’s party, the Janata Dal United, which just days ago joined the BJP’ national coalition. Changes are also expected to be influenced by states that are heading for elections – their representatives are likely to get significant appointments.
Finance Minister Arun Jaitley is expected to shed Defence, which he also manages.