The Cabinet reshuffle by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh (July 13) seems only to be a way of settling political/corporate lobbying equations for the ruling dispensation. The only welcome change is the infusion of young blood. Let's hope that coalition dharma does not land the government in trouble again.
The reshuffle shows that small parties do not have any role in mainstream politics and in the reconstruction of a nation (editorial, July 13). It sends out a wrong message to regional parties which constantly work for the betterment of the country.
It is indeed the wrong message. With this unimaginative exercise, which clearly lacks direction, both the Prime Minister and UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi have once again demonstrated their unwillingness to arrest the inexorable drift in governance. The inability to remove non-performing heavyweights is stark and has only reinforced the public perception of incompetence. Though the government can argue that the shifting of Mr. Ramesh is an elevation, doubts remain about its real intentions. When water resources should occupy top priority, considering that future wars will be fought over water, the portfolio has been downplayed.
J. Anantha Padmanabhan,
The fact that Dr. Singh hopes to face the 2014 general elections with this new team means that if he does not put in place a government which delivers, India will be doomed to suffer for the next three years.
The way in which some ministers have bargained or expressed disappointment over portfolios speak volumes about their real intentions. Congress MP Gurudas Kamat is an example. The point that “Drinking Water and Sanitation” was not good enough for him is an example that here was an opportunity to render worthwhile public service.
It is the Prime Minister's prerogative to decide who he wants in his Council of Ministers. But there wasn't much that the Prime Minister could have done. The reshuffle has neither inspired nor excited us.
The media like to draw too much of blood from the Prime Minister. Whenever there is a Cabinet reshuffle, they come out with their own mathematics of permutations and combinations. Editorials, articles and talk-shows on “why and why not this or that person is to be included or excluded” are propelled with force. Do they forget that we are not a presidential form of democracy where one man has the power to make the choice? We have rightly or wrongly embraced the parliamentary form where the compulsions of communal, caste, regional, linguistic and “coalition dharma”-based politics matter.
Victor Frank A.,
Keywords: Cabinet reshuffle