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Lok Sabha elections 2019: Day after win, ministers on edge

TNN|
May 25, 2019, 11.31 AM IST
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Sushma Swaraj, Nitin Gadkari and Prakash Javadekar leave the Prime Minister’s Office after a Cabinet meeting on Friday. (PTI photo)

Highlights


  • With 303 MPs in Lok Sabha, those in Upper House who were part of Modi’s council of ministers are more apprehensive
  • There were intense discussions in some of the entities where the PM had nominated specialists on whether there was a need for the nominees to put in their papers along with the outgoing council of ministers
(This story originally appeared in on May 25, 2019)
NEW DELHI: It’s not just officers and journalists who are speculating about the shape of PM Narendra Modi’s new council of ministers which is likely to be sworn in next week. Even ministers in the outgoing government seem to be apprehensive about their return after BJP’s landslide win.

There were intense discussions in some of the entities where the PM had nominated specialists on whether there was a need for the nominees to follow convention and put in their papers along with the outgoing council of ministers.

Several ministers stopped taking files on Friday morning since Modi was slated to resign later in the day. While they may have been just playing by the rule book, the confusion was evident among ministerial staff who were unclear whether they should start packing up and clearing their rooms, just in case Modi and party chief Amit Shah decided to drop them in the new Cabinet. The office of one minister, who lost the Lok Sabha poll, was locked on Friday. Files on computers were being deleted in several offices as part of a possible “handing over” next week.

With clarity expected to emerge only a day before the official swearing in, jostling for berths was also beginning as ministers tried to showcase their contribution — both in the government and in BJP’s electoral success.

With 303 MPs in Lok Sabha, those in Upper House who were part of Modi’s council of ministers are more apprehensive.

But, more than lawmakers, members of ministers’ staff were worried. After all, many had spent almost their entire working life as part of ministerial retinue, which comes with perks such as cars, staff and more power compared to a normal babu part of the ministry. For many of them, the search will begin next week once the new Cabinet is in place.

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