India’s Cabinet Rejigged, but Room for Rahul

Congress party leader Rahul Gandhi

Congress party leader Rahul Gandhi

A significant reshuffle of India’s Cabinet on Sunday left one question dangling: Where was Rahul Gandhi?

The scion of India’s Nehru-Gandhi empire wasn’t one of the new ministers, and therefore if – not surprisingly – he leads his Congress party into 2014 elections he’ll be running for pm without ever getting held a government publish of any sort.

“I could have been pleased to include Rahul within the Cabinet, but he’s other preoccupations within the party,” Pm Manmohan Singh stated in announcing his new Cabinet.

Singh, a technocrat, was selected to fill the best minister’s chair in 2004 by Congress party leader Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi’s mother. Singh was broadly seen as an regent, keeping the chair warm until Rahul Gandhi – the boy, grandson and great-grand son of Indian prime ministers – was prepared to take his birthright.

But Gandhi has displayed little public sign that he’s going through any kind of apprenticeship that will prepare him for running the nation.

His allies contended he was repairing the party in the grassroots level and it has taken a lead within the Congress’ campaigns in condition elections in Uttar Pradesh as well as in Bihar recently. The party carried out poorly both in elections.

Gandhi has additionally situated themself because the defender from the common people, joining protesters at land privileges demos as well as getting briefly arrested. However in moments of crisis, he’s rarely taken charge, choosing to defer to Singh or his mother. His powerful speech against corruption in Parliament this past year – among a significant anti-graft protest from the government – was notable because of its rarity.

Political experts state that Gandhi’s refusal to consider a Cabinet position, and become attributed for those workings of the government ministry, could end up being a handicap once the time involves face the electorate.

“Certainly, the anticipation were that Rahul Gandhi would move ahead from as being a student and undertake more responsibility,” stated Aarthi Ramachandran, that has written a magazine on him.

It might have assisted Gandhi’s own credibility if he’d taken a situation within the government or perhaps a ministry where he might have proven results, she stated.

“The party might have gone to folks throughout the election campaign and stated, ‘This is exactly what Rahul Gandhi has accomplished for the folks,’” she stated.

Congress leaders stated Gandhi would focus on refreshing the party’s fortunes in front of the national elections rather than being accountable for a narrow Cabinet position.

Digvijay Singh, a Congress general secretary, indicated Sunday that Gandhi was likely to assume a bigger role within the party hierarchy as well as an announcement about this was expected within the coming week.

Calls to Gandhi’s office Sunday weren’t clarified. It had been entirely possible that he didn’t wish to be too carefully connected using the current government that has been tainted with a raft of scams.

The reshuffle Sunday – needed, simply, to fill seats left vacant following a coalition partner bolted – introduced seven new ministers in to the Cabinet and saw the entry of 15 junior ministers inside a restructuring that introduced more youthful faces in to the leadership.

Former Law Minister Salman Khurshid, who had been named the brand new foreign minister, is two decades more youthful than his predecessor, and the majority of the other ministers sworn in Sunday have been in their fifties or early sixties. In Indian politics, that’s regarded as a family member youth movement. Singh stated the shuffle was the final major Cabinet shake-up expected prior to the next national election.