New Delhi, May 25: Arun Jaitley, Rajnath Singh, Nitin Gadkari and Shiv Sena‘s Anant Geete are likely to figure in a compact Narendra Modi cabinet which will involve a radical restructuring of various ministries with one cabinet minister heading a cluster of departments in complementary sectors.
In a clear indication that Modi is opting for major changes in the structure of the government, a statement issued by his secretariat here tonight said that “focus is on convergence in the activities of various ministries where one cabinet minister will be heading a cluster of ministries which are working in complementary sectors”.
Modi is eventually aiming at “smart governance” where the top layers of Government will be downsized and there would be expansion at the grass root level.
In forming his cabinet, Modi has adopted the principle of “minimum government and maximum governance” and also “rationalisation with a commitment to bring a change in the work culture and style of governnance,” the statement issued from Gujarat Bhawan said.
The statement came at the end of another day of guessing game about the names of ministers to figure in the Modi cabinet that will be sworn in at 6 pm tomorrow.
Till late tonight, even Rashtrapati Bhavan had received no list of ministers from the Prime Ministr-designate. However, indications were that Jaitley would get Finance, Rajnath will be in charge of Home and Gadkari one of the infrastructure ministries. Geete would also have a Cabinet portfolio.Other names making the rounds for the cabinet include Sushma Swaraj, Venkaiah Naidu, Ananth Kumar, Ravi Shankar Prasad, Uma Bharti, Harsh Vardhan and Piyush Goel.
Sources said that the number of ministries would be between 30 and 35 which would be much smaller than usual. However, an expansion of the ministry may take place later. There was no clarity on the role of Advani with some reports suggesting that he may not be made Lok Sabha Speaker which he is said to favour but he may continue as NDA chairman.
In that case, Sumitra Mahajan, s senior BJP Paarliamentarian and former minister, may become the Speaker.
The statement said Modi is aware of the “high expectations” of the people. For whole of four days, he was busy with the formation of the ministry and discussing various alternatives to effective governance, convergence and coordination between various ministries, it said.
“Earlier, there was political instability and multi-party governments and the ministry formation was almost done in a bifurcated manner,” it said.
The Prime Minister-designate, it said, tried in a rational manner to club like-minded departments in the ministry formation in such a way to “convert entity of assembled ministry to organic entity”. The statement went on to add that integrated and inter-connected nature of governance is being focussed in this “new dent”.
In the ministry formation, the process of development will be “more inclusive” than it has been, it said.