Scindia in Bhopal: Union Minister’s day-long visit to the capital has got the country talking about possibilities of a cabinet reshuffle
Scindia caused quite a stir by saying that all top functionaries of the government, ministers and the CM are equal.
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Former Union minister Jyotiraditya Scindia made a day-long visit to the Madhya Pradesh capital, Bhopal, on July 11 creating quite a stir in the process. Scindia’s visit assumes political significance, as it comes after reports of some members of the state Cabinet, who owe allegiance to him, raising the issue of step-motherly treatment being meted out to them. In a Cabinet meeting, some weeks ago, certain ministers had accused Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Kamal Nath of not letting them function freely by posting bureaucrats with the single-point agenda of keeping them on a tight leash.
Scindia’s visit also comes amidst the ongoing leadership crisis in the Congress which has to elect a new party president and then appoint a PCC President in Madhya Pradesh too. While in Bhopal, Scindia met the CM over lunch. The details of the meeting are not known but it appeared that it was cordial — and that the food was good — considering that Scindia appeared in a pleasant mood after the meeting.
Senior Madhya Pradesh Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia (left) held a meeting with state chief minister Kamal Nath (right) in Bhopal recently to discuss Cabinet reshuffle. (Source: Mail Today)
Scindia and Nath may have discussed the modalities of a Cabinet expansion which is in the pipeline. It is said some ministers each from the camps of Digvijaya Singh, Nath and Scindia will be axed to make way for new entrants. Appointment to government-controlled boards and corporations are also in the offing and each camp will have to be accommodated there. Scindia told the media that the Congress government in MP will complete its five-year term — a question that keeps popping up given the developments in Karnataka and Goa — and also the fact that the Congress has only 114 MLAs in the 230 member Assembly, without a majority of its own.
Scindia caused a mini controversy when he said that all top functionaries of the government, bureaucrats, ministers and the CM were equal. The CM’s loyalist and PWD minister, Sajjan Singh Verma, said these were Scindia’s personal views. After his defeat in Guna, Scindia is in a reflective mood. But at the same time, he is also not clear what lies ahead for him as the probabilities are immense. He could be used in an important capacity at the Centre or be deputed as a general secretary for Madhya Pradesh. His main strength in the party, former Congress president Rahul Gandhi, would have probably attempted to send him to MP sometime later in the term of the present government, either as PCC president or even as CM — which would have been resisted by the old guard in the state.
But with Gandhi not around, the field is open to possibilities.
Courtesy of Mail Today