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Solo Concerto

Solo Concerto

Buzz of cabinet expansion after Oct 19

Solo Concerto Tribhuvan Tiwari

If 2014 is the blockbuster year of the BJP, then Prime Minister Narendra Modi may finally be ready to turn his solo hit into a multi-starrer. In letter at least, if not in spirit. Official word is yet to be out, but the buzz is of a cabinet expansion after the assembly election results on October 19. For those in government, it has been a wait too long: they say expansion will be a “welcome relief”. A senior minister told Outlook, “There’s a strong possibility of an expansion after the poll results. It’s about time too. To my mind, we need more people to handle government work. After all, both the PM and the PMO look overburdened and in need of helping hands.”

That’s one way of putting it. But there’s an undercurrent. “You won’t hear it officially from anyone,” says a senior BJP leader, “but there’s a growing sense of frustration and suffocation within the party and the government. The PM must learn to share power. Ministers can’t endlessly wait for the PM to take every decision for every department.” In saffron circles, quiet resentment is building up against Modi’s micro-managing ways. “Modi’s imprint is ubiquitous. No doubt he’s the BJP’s strongest and most successful leader,” says a senior leader. “But that does not automatically mean that everyone is happy playing second fiddle. But there’s nothing one can do about it.”

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