By MATHIHALLI MADAN MOHAN
Mr. Ananth Kumar the BJP General Secretary cocked a snook on his finding berth in the Modi cabinet while his bitter rival Yeddyurappa had failed.
Little did he realise that he was in for a loss face later on in terms of protocol and portfolios.
The six time in a row as MP representing Bangalore South, Mr. Ananth Kumar, who had handled the portfolios of Civil Aviation, Culture, Tourism and Urban Development in the NDA government headed by Mr. Vajpayee, not only found himself lowly placed in the pecking in for the cabinet formation but also had to be satisfied with a not so glorious portfolio of Chemicals and Fertilisers.
This was obvious in the manner in which the cabinet ministers were sworn in and seating arrangement made for the first cabinet meeting of the Modi cabinet. Of the three confirmed Advani acolytes who went over to the Modi camp at the eleventh hour, Arun Jaitley, and Sushma Swaraj found themselves at the 3rd and 4th position and walked away with the prestigious portfolios of Finance with (with additional charge of Defence) and External Affairs respectively, Ananth Kumar was too lowly placed.
Besides, a relatively junior BJP politician from Karnataka, Mr Sadananda Gowda, was placed higher and the debutant Cabinet Minister was allocated the prestigious portfolio of Railways.
This has assumed lot of political importance in the context of what the Ananth Kumar’s supporters had done on the previous occasion when the NDA government headed by Vajpayee had come to office. In the seating arrangement at the cabinet meetings, arranged in alphabetical order, Ananth Kumar found himself placed next only to Deputy Prime Minister Mr. L K Adjani. On the other hand, Ramakrishna Hegde found his place at much lower level, because his name started with “R”.
Ananth Kumar’s supporters went to town that their leader enjoyed a better status and rapport with patriarch duo of BJP, namely Vajpayee and Advani. Those who were aware of nuances of seating arrangement felt a little amused but others swallowed with awe over the “rising political stature” of Mr. Ananth Kumar.
(Posted on May 29 , 2014 @ 10:00pm)
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