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Mann to expand his Cabinet on Monday

Chandigarh: Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann will expand his cabinet Monday and five new members are expected to take the oath of office at Raj Bhawan at 5 pm.

According to sources in the AAP, the state government has sought an appointment from Punjab Governor Banwarilal Purohit for administering the oath to the new ministers, the sources also said.

The names of two-time MLA from Sunam Aman Arora, Kharar MLA Anmol Gagan Mann, Chetan Singh Jouramajra who represents Samana in the Legislative Assembly, Dr Inderbir Nijjar, an MLA from Amritsar South, and MLA Fauja Singh Sarari from Guruharsahai are doing the rounds for the ministerial positions.

In fact, Fauja Singh has himself confirmed having received a call for taking oath in tomorrow's expansion in a video message.

Punjab can have 18 ministers, including the chief minister as per the norms and currently, there are nine ministers in the cabinet including Bhagwant Mann. In May, Chief Minister Mann had dropped Vijay Singla as the Punjab health minister on charges of corruption.

Sources, however, said that for now Mann will not be adding nine ministers and will fill a few vacancies only. Another expansion may take place later to fill those posts, they added.

Mann had met AAP national convenor and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal in Delhi on Friday to hold a discussion on the cabinet expansion. Several two-time MLAs of the AAP have been lobbying to secure a berth for themselves. The party had rejected them earlier during the cabinet formation in March.

The Aam Aadmi Party had stormed to power by bagging 92 seats in the 117-member Punjab Assembly during the state polls conducted earlier this year.

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