Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will reshuffle his Union Council of Ministers on Wednesday, with the swearing-in of the new incumbents scheduled for 5 p.m. at the Rashtrapati Bhavan, government sources confirmed.
This comes almost precisely one month after the conclusion of the Congress' 83rd plenary session at Burari, and after weeks of feverish speculation. It also signals the fact that changes in the party organisation, including the reconstitution of the Congress' apex decision-making body — the Congress Working Committee — will follow shortly.
Earlier in the day, Congress president Sonia Gandhi met Dr. Singh, reportedly, to finalise the list of those to be included, shifted or dropped from the Union Council of Ministers.
Of the Congress' allies, the final list may not include names from either the Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam or the Trinamool Congress, with discussions about changes in the Nationalist Congress Party still on.
With television crews posted all day at the mouth of the lane that leads to 10, Janpath, all eyes were on visitors to Ms. Gandhi's official residence. Visitors included Union Tribal Minister Kantilal Bhuria and Union Steel Minister Virbhadra Singh, triggering speculation that Mr. Bhuria may have been sounded out to head the Madhya Pradesh State unit, and Mr. Singh, to exchange his current job for one in a Raj Bhavan.
Congress media chairperson Janardhan Dwivedi also spent close to two hours at Ms. Gandhi's residence, with sources close to Mr. Dwivedi saying the meeting was not to discuss a ministerial job but was likely to have been a discussion on impending changes in the party.
Naveen Jindal, the young MP from Haryana's Kurukshetra, also met Ms. Gandhi on Tuesday.