Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar kept the crucial Home Department with himself and Deputy Chief Minister Tejashwi Yadav has taken charge of the Health Department in the first cabinet expansion of the newly formed Mahagathbandhan government in Bihar.
Of the 31 ministers sworn into the Bihar cabinet, 16 were from Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD), 11 were from Nitish's Janta Dal-United (JD-U), two were from Congress and one was from Hindustani Awam Morch (HAM) and one was an Independent lawmaker.
Meanwhile, BJP Rajya Sabha MP Sushil Kumar Modi said Nitish has betrayed Tejashwi Yadav by keeping Home and Finance portfolios with the JD(U).
The former Dy CM said, "What message does Nitish Kumar want to give by keeping people like Surendra Yadav, Ramanand Yadav and Lalit Yadav in the cabinet? Nitish Kumar cleverly kept both Home and finance portfolios with JD(U) and betrayed Tejashwi Yadav too."
Taking to Twitter, Modi said 13 ministers from Muslim-Yadav combination have been inducted into the cabinet while there is no Teli, Kanyakubj, Kayasth and Kanu.
"#BiharCabinetExpansion 13 Ministers from MY combination (33%).Lalit Yadav,Surender Yadav,Ramanand Yadav,Kartik Kumar are known Bahubali.No Teli,Kanyakubj,Kayasth,Kanu.Bjp made EBC as Dy.CM," he tweeted.
Meanwhile, the BJP's central leadership will be holding a meeting with the party's Bihar unit leaders today, days after the JD(U) parted ways with it and formed a new government in the state.
They are likely to deliberate upon the BJP's future course of action and the strategy for the 2024 Lok Sabha polls, sources told news agency PTI, adding organisational changes may also come up for discussion.
According to the sources, Union Ministers Ashwini Choubey, Giriraj Singh and Nityanand Rai, and the party's senior leaders Ravi Shankar Prasad and Sushil Modi - all of whom are from Bihar - are expected to attend the meeting. The BJP's Bihar unit president Sanjay Jaiswal, former deputy chief ministers Tarkishore Prasad and Renu Devi, and former minister in the state government Shahnawaz Hussain are also likely to attend the meeting, they said.