Odisha Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Wednesday said that he has no plans to reshuffle his ministry now. However, there has been a lot of speculation on another ministry reshuffle, ahead of the state Assembly elections while it was gaining pace after Agriculture and Panchayati Raj Minister Pradeep Maharathy’s resignation from the council of ministers on Sunday.
Apart from Maharathy, another ministerial berth has been lying vacant since last year. It has been lying vacant since dismissal of Damodar Rout from the council of ministers.
With Maharathy’s resignation and dismissal of Rout, the number of ministers in the council has come down to 18.
Odisha can have a maximum of 22 ministers, including the chief minister. As per the 91st Amendment to the Constitution, the number of ministers in the state should be not more than 15 per cent of the numbers of the state Legislature.