A huge change in the portfolios in the Union Government is the talk of the town. Ms. Smriti Irani has been removed from the Human Resource Department (HRD) ministry and she has been shifted to the less glamorous and not-so-prestigious Textile department. Her post has been filled by Prakash Javadekar who has been promoted to handle this portfolio right from yesterday.
There have been few other changes in other departments, Venkaiah Naidu will now act as the Minister for Information and Broadcasting, a portfolio held by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley as an additional charge. Sadananda Gowda loses the Law Ministry to Ravi Shankar Prasad, who is also the Information Technology Minister.
But the biggest news has been of Smriti Irani’s reshuffle, because it has been a mere respectful demotion infront of the people at large, but politically more stories have come up regarding this action of the Modi government.
Smriti Irani has been in controversies from quite a big period of time. Her education has been quite a murky topic from time immemorial. In 2004, she presented an affidavit that she had a Bachelor of Arts degree from the School of Correspondence, Delhi University. But in the 2014 General elections, she declared that she had a Bachelor of Commerce degree from University Of Delhi which was quite fishy. She has been accused in the case of Rohith Vemula’s suicide, a Hyderabad University scholar, wherein it was claimed that HRD ministry was involved in the negligence to provide accommodation facilities and banning lower castes students from assessing certain areas on campus. It invited huge protests and mass demonstrations in the whole country. The mishandling of the issue was not the only blunder of Ms. Irani, she was also accused of altering facts in her Parliament speech. Many scholars and activists believe that this issue raised the alarm and was a huge factor that encouraged the reshuffle.
Ms. Irani’s two year term was challenging and controversial too. Even after losing the seat of MP of Amethi while contesting against Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi, she was given such a prestigious post as per her calibre and strength. After the reshuffle, she exclaimed, “In the last two years, all initiatives at HRD Ministry have been towards increasing learning outcomes for students and improving quality of education.”
Let us wait and watch what this reshuffling brings for the entire country and the upgradation of the Modi’s government standard.