New Delhi, Jul 6 (PTI) Union ministers Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and R C P Singh submitted their resignations to Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Wednesday, a day before the completion of their Rajya Sabha term, sources said.
During a cabinet meeting earlier in the day, Modi lauded both Naqvi and Singh for their contributions to the country during their ministerial tenure, sources said.
Former bureaucrat and once a confidant of Bihar Chief Minister and JD(U) supremo Nitish Kumar, Singh resigned on his birthday, one year after joining the Union Cabinet from his party’s quota.
He was wished by Prime Minister Modi on his birthday in the morning.
With their term as Rajya Sabha MPs set to end on Thursday, both ministers submitted their resignations to fulfil the constitutional obligation as they will cease to be parliamentarians from Friday.
After Naqvi, there will be no Muslim minister at the Centre and the BJP will have no Muslim MP among its nearly 400 Members of Parliament.
After Naqvi was not nominated in the recent Rajya Sabha polls, there has been speculation that he is being considered for the post of vice president, the election for which is scheduled to be held on August 6, or some other key position.
Singh had fallen out of favour with Nitish KUmar and was denied a Rajya Sabha ticket. With his resignation, there are only two ministers at the Centre from BJP allies — Ramdas Athawale from the RPI(A) and Anupriya Patel from the Apna Dal.
Naqvi was holding the charge of Minority Affairs Ministry and Singh was Union Steel Minister. It was yet to be declared who would get the charge of these ministries.
With the Union Cabinet now having two more vacancies and no representation from the BJP’s biggest ally JD(U), there is a possibility of a cabinet expansion-cum- reshuffle in near future. However, there was no official word on it so far.
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