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India PM plans cabinet revamp, some ministers offer to quit - sources
August 31, 2017 / 6:41 PM / 19 days ago

India PM plans cabinet revamp, some ministers offer to quit - sources

Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi gestures as he addresses the nation from the historic Red Fort during Independence Day celebrations in Delhi, India August 15, 2017. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi

NEW DELHI (Reuters) - Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi plans to reshuffle his cabinet over the next two days and some mid-level ministers have offered to quit to pave the way for changes, sources in the party and aides to the ministers said.

A revamp of the cabinet has been on the cards for months because some ministers are holding multiple portfolios which is seen as a drag on efficiency. Modi is also seeking to improve governance before he seeks re-election in 2019.

With economic growth slowing to its slowest pace in three years, Modi is coming under pressure to deliver the promises he made in 2014.

There was no official announcement of the cabinet revamp but sources Reuters spoke to said if it took place it would have to be done before Modi leaves on a foreign tour on Sunday.

The death of Environment Minister Anil Madhav Dave and the election of Minister for Urban Development M. Venkaiah Naidu as vice-president opened vacancies, giving Modi an opportunity to bring in members from regional political parties.

According to four party sources, Sanjeev Balyan, minister of state for water resources, Rajiv Pratap Rudy, minister of state for skill development and entrepreneurship, Kalraj Mishra, minister of micro, small and medium enterprises, and Mahendra Nath Pandey minister of state for human resource development have all offered to resign.

Writing by Sanjeev Miglani and Neha Dasgupta; Editing by Richard Balmforth

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