Bengaluru: As many as 10 BJP MLAs, all defectors from Congress and JDS, would be inducted as Karnataka ministers on Thursday as Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa expands his cabinet for the first time to fulfill his promise of ministerial berths to all the rebel members.
The swearing-in ceremony would take place at 10.30 am at the Raj Bhavan when 10 of the 11 rebel legislators — Ramesh Jarkhiholi, Anand Singh, BC Patil, K Sudhakar, Narayana Gowda, ST Somasekhar, Bhairati Basavaraj, Gopalaiah, Shivaram Hebbar and Sreemanth Patil — will be accommodated in cabinet grade posts.
The revolt by the rebels led to collapse of the Congress-JDS coalition in July last year, paving the way for the formation of the BJP government. At present, there are 18 ministers, including the Chief Minister, in the cabinet that has a sanctioned strength of 34. Sixteen berths are vacant.
The Chief Minister had announced on Sunday that 13 BJP leaders, including the 10 MLAs who had defected from the Congress and the JD(S), would take oath on Thursday.
Mahesh Kumathalli, who left the Congress to join the BJP and won the recent byelection, will not be not made a Minister. Yediyurappa on Wednesday said "It is difficult to make him (Kumathalli) minister now. I will call him and discuss with him. We will try to give him some other responsibility." The Chief Minister had earlier promised ministerial berths to all of them.