Small is no longer beautiful and the CPM which earlier was opposed to a jumbo Cabinet has set aside its stand and will bring E P Jayarajan back into the ministry.
The party state committee which met today decided to reinduct Jayarajan and returning him Industry and Sports portfolios he had held before bowing out in October 2016 after facing the charge of nepotism. He was accused of appointing his nephew to head a public sector unit. However, he was given a clear chit by the vigilance department.
He will be second in command to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan. He is expected to hold charge when Pinarayi leaves for treatment to the US. MM Mani, who came into the Cabinet when Jayarajan quit and was given the Power portfolio, will continue to hold the post.
Also read: Hamletian dilemma over Jayarajan’s induction
Party state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan made the announcement of reinducting Jayarajan. He said the matter would be presented at the LDF meeting on Monday. Jayarajan is likely to take oath on August 14.
Another major development was the decision to bifurcate the Education portfolio, carving out a separate one for Higher Education which will be given to KT Jaleel. This bifurcation, generally considered unwelcome, will see C Raveendranath left with just general education.
Jaleel will also hold charge of Minorities Welfare. AC Moideen, who held Industry, will now have Local Administration. To add to the size, CPI was expected to get the Chief Whip post with Cabinet rank.