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Updated: May 12, 2013 03:39 IST

Joshi gets additional charge of Railways, Law for Sibal

  • Smita Gupta
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File photos of Kapil Sibal and C P Joshi.
The Hindu
File photos of Kapil Sibal and C P Joshi.

Union Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal and Union Surface Transport Minister C. P. Joshi were given additional charge of law and railway portfolios, respectively, on Saturday, a day after the incumbents Ashwani Kumar and Pawan Kumar Bansal were sacked.

This comes ahead of a possible reshuffle of the Union council of ministers — likely the last one — before the general elections slated for next year. This may take place, party sources said, along with some promised changes in the party organisation before the UPA celebrates its ninth anniversary in power later this month on May 22.

For the Congress — especially Lok Sabha MPs — the exit of Mr. Kumar and Mr. Bansal came as a great relief as with each passing day, the credibility of the government and the party was dipping.

Indeed, on Friday, new Congress spokesperson Bhakta Charan Das — even as he was being grilled by journalists on the fate of the two ministers — sought to keep the focus on the Food Security Bill that the opposition did not permit the government to pass in the budget session just gone by.

Mr. Das repeatedly pointed out that while corruption was an issue that the party would deal with firmly — as it did a few hours later by seeking the resignations of Mr.Kumar and Mr. Bansal — ensuring food security, something of far greater consequence, could not be done without the assistance of opposition parties in Parliament.

Meanwhile, even as a deeply embarrassed Mr. Bansal kept his counsel, Mr. Kumar continued to stress his innocence on Saturday.

Putting up a brave face, he claimed at a press conference that he quit to end an “unnecessary” controversy. He maintained that the Supreme Court had made no adverse comments against him in the case of the vetting of a CBI probe report on Coalgate. He told journalists that resignation does not imply “wrongdoing”.

“Yesterday I tendered my resignation to the honourable Prime Minister while thanking him for giving me the opportunity to be a part of his team,” he said.

Asked whether he had been made a scapegoat, Mr. Kumar merely said, “People of this country, my friends who stood by me, many of you in the media and my esteemed colleagues in the profession know me for what I am. I would rather let them make a judgment.”

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Is It Enough....?
Late is better than never, that is how the UPA government and Congress party have responded towards the ministers of Law and Railways. The congress party might have dragged the issue till now due to Karnataka elections. However to public it is just an eye wash and it doesn’t enrich the confidence and trust towards Congress party any way. All the political parties should realize one fact that people today look at the parties or persons who are honest and committed towards the interests of common man with all the integrity. If the parties don’t prove then people may not spare any one, may be Congress or BJP. The 2014 elections will be a great lesson to all the political parties and leaders.

from:  Dr. Sudhakar Reddy Kalathuru
Posted on: May 11, 2013 at 19:13 IST

I think this is the first time that the PM has taken a decision without consultation of the "extra Constitutional authority". The speculation was that Mallikarjuna Karge would get Railways but the PM thought otherwise Good continue it Sir.

from:  ramu
Posted on: May 11, 2013 at 19:08 IST

Too many cook spoil the food, I could sense the same with the Law ministry now. Infact I am
very confident that Mr Sibal will do something of that sort which will void all the decision made by
the honourable Supreme Court in the case of Ashwini Kumar.

from:  AKS Blore
Posted on: May 11, 2013 at 18:43 IST

I hope Kapil Sibal will not bring the zero loss theory here also!

from:  C S Sundaresha
Posted on: May 11, 2013 at 16:07 IST

enga voor all in all alagiri raja ivar than. When tsunami stuck, he was moved to
science and tech, When Raja was kicked out, he moved to Telecom and pronounced
zero loss and proved by the following auction that outdated product could not be
sold. Now to be additional charge for law. Can anyone say, his credentials as to his
performance score card. The confusion he has created in Medical admission is still to
be resolved. over 80000students aspiring for PG admission is unresolved with NEET
case not being heard and adjudicated.. Moving him to law ministry and additional
charge for railways.. Congress kai vecha idamellam scam ayiduthe,, pavam kootachi
romba kashtam than thalaivare, btw, ivanga rendu perum unga alunga thane..

from:  R Gopalan
Posted on: May 11, 2013 at 16:01 IST

Shrewd Sibal did everything to create chaos (via Swami Agnivesh)in Anna
Hazare's Andolan....He destroyed BSNL in his tenure,today BSNL is gasping
for breath..What will happen to LAW ministry? He will try to pass a bill
by which it would be made compulsory for the Supreme Court to share
information with the Executive/ UPA Chairperson before passing a

Posted on: May 11, 2013 at 15:58 IST

The short-term arrangements are not in the interest of the country. There should
be long-term solutions. In the appointment of chiefs and their deputies in CBI,
CAG, and such other regulators, investigating agencies, and central authorities,
there should be a group like the office of the Chief Election Commission with one
chief and his deputies depending on the quantum of work and appointment should
be made by a panel comprising the Prime Minister, the Opposition leaders, and the
Chief Justice of India in consultation in advance with the organizations with which
the appointees were associated or in which they worked as career officers and
further in consultation with the experts in such fields. The appointments should
not be confined to only officials in government but should be kept wide open so
that people with wider exposure and independence in functioning could come and
contribute for the success of the organizations.

from:  Dr. K. U. Mada
Posted on: May 11, 2013 at 15:23 IST
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