Rudy quits ahead of Cabinet rejig

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Rajiv Pratap Rudy, who resigned as Skill Development Minister, amidt news of Modi Cabinet reshuffle has said that he stepped down from the post on party's order.

Rudy and Sitharaman are likely to be given party roles ahead of the general elections in 2019 when Modi will seek a second term in office, sources said.

"Yes, I have put in my papers and it is part of the process", he told IANS over phone, refusing to elaborate on the reasons behind his resignation.

Some reports suggest that Rudy is expected to be given an organisational assignment in the Bharatiya Janata Party.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be out of the country from September 3 to September 7 for the Brics summit in China and a state visit to Myanmar.

Health Minister J P Nadda is a front-runner for the post of Himachal Pradesh CM candidate from his party. Mahendra Nath Pandey was appointed as BJP cheif in UP late this evening and Nitish Kumar is expected to be rewarded high in BJP as it came to sharing power with BJP again after split with Lalu Prasad Yadav's RJD and Congress.

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Apart from the two ministers, MoS, Human Resources, Mahendra Lal Pandey also submitted his resignation. Party sources also said that Shah possibly discussed preparations for state polls.

In the last elections in 2012 when Modi was the State's Chief Minister, the BJP had won 116 seats.

He said he would work to further strengthen the BJP in western UP.

With the exit of Manohar Parrikar and M Venkaiah Naidu from the Government and the passing away of Environment Minister Anil Madhav Dave, the Council of Ministers is now being left with three vacant positions. President Kovind is slated to depart for Andhra Pradesh Friday around 11 am.

Railways minister Suresh Prabhu, who has been under the spotlight following several derailments, might be reassigned as Environment, Forest and Climate Change Minister, which he reportedly performed well under the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government. Junior Health Minister Faggan Singh Kulaste were also learnt to have been summoned by the BJP president. Karnataka will go for assembly polls next year.