New Delhi: Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal and Road & Transport Minister CP Joshi were on Saturday given additional charges of the Law Ministry and Railway Ministry respectively, following the resignation of Ashwani Kumar and Pawan Bansal on Friday night.
 
A Rashtrapati Bhawan communiqué made these announcements after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh recommended these changes to President Pranab Mukherjee, who accepted the resignations of Kumar and Bansal.
       
Sibal, an eminent lawyer himself, will get an opportunity to handle the Law ministry for the first time, while Joshi has held the Railway portfolio temporarily after the exit of Trinamool Congress nominee Mukul Roy last year.
      
"The President of India, as advised by the Prime Minister, has accepted the resignation from the following members of the Council of Ministers with immediate effect: Pawan Kumar Bansal and Ashwani Kumar.
      
"As advised by the Prime Minister of India, the President has directed that the additional charge of the Ministry of Railways and the Ministry of Law and Justice shall be given to Dr CP Joshi and Shri Kapil Sibla respectively," the communique said.
      
The changes in the portfolios notwithstanding, there is speculation that there could be a reshuffle of the Union Council of Ministers soon to fill up some vacancies caused by the DMK's exit from the government and the need to place new nominees in the departments being held as additional charge.

(Agencies)

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