The PMO has asked both Shiv Sena and TDP to suggest their nominees -two in case of Sena and one from TDP.
The move is seen as a goodwill gesture to Sena when the two sides are stalemated over Uddhav Thackeray's contingent joining the Devendra Fadnavis government in Maharashtra.
The development acquires significance also due to Modi's plan to appoint Suresh Prabhu, a former Union minister whose performance as environment and power minister in the Vajpayee government was widely appreciated.
Though technically still a `Sainik' who has good equations with Uddhav, Prabhu is already engaged with the Modi government.
Modi also contacted Andhra Pradesh CM N Chandrababu Naidu to ask for his choice.
Naidu, who was in the capital to address the India Economic Summit, may recommend Rajya Sabha member Y S Chowdhary while seeking one more berth.
Party sources said Rajasthan may get representation in the form of Rajyavardhan Rathore and Sanwar Lal Jat, while the name of Ramkripal Yadav was discussed as another possibility from Bihar.
The party grapevine has it that Nadda may be assigned charge of environment which is being handled by I&B minister Prakash Javadekar, while Birendra Singh may get rural development or agriculture.
Prabhu is tipped to get an important infrastructure ministry, railways or rural development.
Parrikar, who was reluctant to move to the Centre, gave in to persuasion by Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah who felt that he, with his track record as a good administrator, engineering background and reputation for probity, will be an asset to the team.
He is likely to be replaced by Speaker Rajendra Arlekar.
Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi is likely to be sworn in along with Hansraj Ahir, Giriraj Singh and Jayant Sinha as ministers of state.
Afive-minute conversation that Andhra Pradesh CM and TDP chief Chandrababu Naidu had with PM Narendra Modi in the midst of the India Economic Summit on Thursday had hopefuls in the regional party conclude that TDP was being offered a berth in the Union Cabinet expansion.
While being interviewed at the summit, Naidu was informed of an important phone call for him. It turned out the phone call was from Modi.
On being asked by the moderator if the call had to do with the Cabinet expansion, Naidu said the PM would shortly expand his team.