Congress Legislature Party leader Oommen Chandy will be sworn in as the 21st Chief Minister of Kerala at the Raj Bhavan in Thiruvananthapuram on Wednesday.
The leaders of six constituents of the United Democratic Front will be sworn in as Ministers along with Mr. Chandy. They are P.K. Kunhalikutty (Indian Union Muslim League), K.M. Mani (Kerala Congress[M]), K.P. Mohanan (Socialist Janata [Democratic]), T.M. Jacob (Kerala Congress [Jacob]), K.B. Ganesh Kumar (Kerala Congress[B]), and Shibu Baby John (Revolutionary Socialist Party [Baby John]).
The Chandy Cabinet will have 20 Ministers, with the likely addition of one. The Co ngress will have 10 nominees, including the Chief Minister, the Muslim League four, and the Kerala Congress(M) two. The Socialist Janata (Democratic), Kerala Congress(B), Kerala Congress (Jacob) and the RSP (Baby John) will have one nominee each.
The nominees for the three legislative slots of Speaker, Deputy Speaker, and Minister for Parliamentary Affairs will be finalised by May 23, when the other Ministers will be sworn in. The details of portfolios have not been announced officially, but some of the portfolios of the constituents have been finalised. Accordingly, the Kerala Congress(M) will get the prime portfolios of Finance, Law, Housing, Irrigation, and Water Resources. The Muslim League will get the portfolios it held in the previous UDF government, along with a few other departments. These include Industry and Information Technology, Local Administration, Education, Public Works, Social Welfare, and Minority Affairs.
Discussions on the allocation of portfolios to other constituents are still on. Sources said the Socialist Janata (Democratic) was likely to get Agriculture and Animal Husbandry, while the Kerala Congress (Jacob) would get Civil Supplies, Ports and Harbour Engineering, and the RSP (Baby John) Labour. UDF sources said the portfolios of the coalition partners would be announced soon after the first Cabinet meeting on Wednesday.
The posts of Speaker, Deputy Speaker, and Parliamentary Affairs Minister will be shared by the Congress, the Muslim League and the Kerala Congress(M). The final decision to allot the Parliamentary Affairs portfolio to Mr. Mani's party is yet to be taken.
Mr. Mani, who made a hard bargain, will don the mantle of Finance Minister, with the additional portfolio of Law and Housing, while his party colleague P.J. Joseph will get the Water Resources portfolio.