Congress inducts young blood in Cabinet

9 April, 2008

In a bid to improve electoral chances in the coming general elections, the United Progressive alliance-led Central Government has inducted young blood into the Cabinet.

This has helped in reducing the average age of the group of ministers. Among the new faces political whiz kids Jyotiraditya Scindia and Jitin Prasada are part of the most attractive mix. After the reshuffle, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh now has a good mix of experienced, politically strong, tactical, flexible, image savvy, economists, management professionals, and salts-of-the-earth in his Cabinet.

Other than Jyotiraditya Scindia and Jitin Prasada, who are sons of former Congress leaders Madhavaraja Scindia and Jitendra Prasada respectively, there are some new faces. These include Chief Election Commissioner M S Gill, former Puducherry Chief Minster V Narayanaswamy and Santosh Bagrodia, MP from Rajasthan, Ramesh Oraon of Jharkhand and Jorhat MP B K Handique.

The 37-year-old Jyotiraditya is an alumni of the Doon School, Dehradun and later studied at Harvard and Stanford universities in the US. He had also worked as an investment banker with companies like Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley. It is expected that Jyotiraditya would stand for global aspirations of the ruling Congress party.

Jitin Prasada studied at The Doon School and graduated from the Sri Ram College of Commerce, Delhi. He also did his MBA from Indian Management Institute (IMI), New Delhi. Jitin has worked with BPL and DSP Merrill Lynch before joining active politics. The other new face in the cabinet, M S Gill, is a sports enthusiast and a famous bureaucrat who had excelled in central service.

The Prime Minister has now a wide range of experienced ministerial cadets in his team like Arjun Singh, Sharad Pawar, Pranab Mukherji, Shjivraj Patil, Sushil Kumar Shinde, Kamal Nath and Jaipal Reddy. There are some Mr Cleans such as A K Antony and Kapil Sibal in the cabinet. The presence of Lalu Prasad Yadav, Ramvilas Paswan and Sharad Pawar form the popular face of the government.

Finance minister P Chidambaram, Health Minister Anbumoni Ramdoss, Manisankar Aiyar and Kapil Sibal are well renowned professionals in the cabinet. Vayalar Ravi and Priyaranjan Dasmunshi are said to be flexible characters in the government, who can handle any job.

With the induction of seven new faces, the government could now claim a comprehensive accommodative minister profile. The Congress leadership is hopeful that this mix of experience, youth, professionals, peasants and popular leaders would give the government new momentum.



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