Singh makes limited reshuffle of Cabinet


Prime Minister Manmohan Singh carried out a limited reshuffle yesterday to fill the position of Finance Minister vacated by Pranab Mukherjee who was elected as President of India earlier this month.

The Prime Minister has placed P Chidambaram as the new Minister of Finance. Mr Chidambaram (66), who is seen as being market friendly and pro-reform, was previously Finance Minister between 1996/1997 and 2004/2008; in the latter role he is credited with steering India safely through the world economic crisis. He has stepped up from the role of Minister of Home Affairs which he has held since 2008.

Replacing Mr Chidambaram in Home Affairs is Sushil Kumar Shinde (70) who has been Minister of Power since 2006 (see previous article).

Veerappa Moily, the Corporate Affairs Minister, will now take on the additional portfolio of Minister of Power. Mr Moily (72) was Minister for Law and Justice from 2009/2011 until he became Minister of Corporate Affairs in July 2011. Mr Moily will have to deal with the problems of severe power outages earlier this week as well as a lack of investment in the industry and a failure to resolve coal supply problems (see previous article).

A more comprehensive Cabinet reshuffle is expected after the monsoon session.

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