As the Congress readies itself for the Lok Sabha and Maharashtra assembly polls due next year, there are chances of a reshuffle in the state cabinet and the party organisation in the state. Congress sources told DNA that there are chances of the long-pending cabinet reshuffle which could take place soon. The cabinet has three vacant berths.
The sources added that Maharashtra Pradesh Congress Committee president Manikrao Thakre could be inducted as minister. Those likely to replace him include former minister Rohidas Patil, Rajya Sabha parliamentarians Hussain Dalwai and Rajni Patil.
The Nationalist Congress Party too may reshuffle its pack and is also demanding an extra ministerial berth.
New faces, including former chief minister Vilasrao Deshmukh’s son and legislator from Latur Amit, are likely to be brought in with some ministers being dropped. The state Congress may also see an overhaul to prepare it for the coming polls where its ally — the Nationalist Congress Party —is trying to emerge as the single largest party.
Sceptics however said the Congress may not fill up all vacant berths to dangle a carrot before sulking partymen.
Nationalist Congress Party sources said that after the Congress decided to bite the bait, they too would follow suit. “Pawarsaheb (party chief and union agriculture minister Sharad Pawar) is judging his ministers’ report cards and non-performers will be dropped. We’re also seeking another cabinet berth,” a senior Nationalist Congress Party leader said, adding that of three vacancies, the party has been seeking one.