ISLAMABAD     -   Prime Minister Imran Khan is likely to bring about important changes in the federal cabinet next month, parliamentary sources said on Sunday.

They said that the prime minister is mulling to induct three ministers in the cabinet from PTI’s allied parties including PML-Q, MQM-P and Balochistan National Party (BNP-M).

By doing so, the prime minister would fulfil his commitment with these parties. The sources further said that the prime minister is also mulling to change portfolios of some of the ministers in order to accommodate young blood and the party leadership has already started searching for the competent young parliamentarians.

The portfolios most likely to be swapped around are defence, interior, education, information, and defence production.

According to the sources, the incumbent Defence Minister Pervez Khattak is likely to be given charge of the interior ministry, a portfolio he had expressed interest in when the PTI government formed its cabinet the first time around.

Minister for Defence Production Zubaida Jalal, meanwhile, is being considered for the education portfolio given her vast exposure in the field.

Although the PTI government has been satisfied with Education Minister Shafqat Mehmood, Prime Minister Imran is still considering moving him to a different ministry, the sources said.

Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Ali Muhammad Khan is another cabinet member who could receive a different portfolio since the appointment of Azam Khan Swati as the federal minister for parliamentary affairs has made his current position redundant, the sources said.

They added that Premier Imran also wants to bring senior PTI leader Dr Babar Awan back into the cabinet. Awan was originally appointed as the prime minister’s adviser on parliamentary affairs when the PTI was forming its government but stepped down on ‘moral grounds’ after he was summoned by the National Accountability Bureau in connection to the Nandipur reference.

But while Awan reportedly has his heart set on the law and justice ministry, the sources said current Law Minister Barrister Farogh Naseem is still the prime minister’s favoured pick for the ministry. As such, they suggested that Awan may be asked to take over the information portfolio from Firdous Ashiq Awan. Whether Firdous will be allotted a new portfolio or removed from the cabinet is not clear as yet.

There is also speculation that the law and justice portfolio may be given to Parliamentary Secretary Malaika Bukhari, but such a move is subject to the verdict of the Islamabad High Court on a petition concerning her eligibility.

Among the newer younger faces being considered for cabinet membership, one favourite is PML-Q chief Chaudhry Shujaat Hussain’s son Salik Hussain.

The PML-Q’s top leadership, however, prefers to have Moonis Elahi in the cabinet. MQM Pakistan’s Aminul Haq is another young face thought to be a favourite for entry into cabinet.