TODAY -

5 Ministers for NE amid COVID-19

Free Thinker *



At dawn an Editor of a very popular daily – WhatsApped me - expressing his worries of the unending pandemic situation of the State–what to do? Still 850 plus, death average near 10 daily , for a population of 35 lacs. Situation is still grim; Covid-19 is still playing havoc here. The situation in other NE States is no better.

My only suggestion to deal with the present surge is complete strict shutdown for 14 days. Stringent lockdown certainly helps; we have seen it in the UK and other countries. Let the people and economy suffer for some more days; we shall bounce back if we remain alive.

Amidst Covid pandemic we have a very encouraging development for the North East. Inducting three more Ministers from the region in the Union Council of Ministers we are creating history; for the first time we have five Ministers at the Centre from the North East.

Out of these five Ministers two are of Cabinet rank and three are of MOS rank. But the Ministries allocated to the NE Ministers are really important ones. In fact Law and Justice, Shipping and Waterways, Education, Petroleum, External Affairs, Social justice, AYUSH (though new) and Labor are important Ministries or Departments.

So far we don’t know the internal allocations of the MOSs. Nevertheless all the Ministries given to them are significant. If we seriously plan and properly work out we can achieve great heights in all these areas, not only for NE but also for the entire Nation.

Sarbananda Sonowal was the Chief Minister of Assam. He is always a loveable leader of Assam, always smiling and very helpful. After winning the State election he was brought to Delhi. Central leadership of his party perhaps wants to try a gentleman who claims that he can do wonders.

Sonowal ji was earlier in the Union Council of Ministers as MOS (Independent charge) for Skill Development and Entrepreneurship and Youth Affairs and Sports. Now, he is holding the Cabinet charge of the Ministry of Ports, Shipping, Waterways and AYUSH. Wishing him all the best.

Kiren Rijiju has been alleviated to Cabinet. Central leaders feel that he is smart and can deliver. If my calculation is true he is at number 22 in the hierarchy of the Modi Cabinet. What a rise ! He wanted to go to Tokyo and bring medals for the country but now Thakur is going.

We believe this time our performance will be much better. Kirenji has been given a very challenging Ministry–Law & Justice. Now it is time to reread all the ‘Dukis’ he read in CLC, Delhi University. We think he can handle the job very well.

Rameswar Teli, MP from Assam, who was earlier having Food Processing is now shifted to Petroleum and Natural Gas and Ministry of Labour & Employment. He has dedicated everything to the people; whether he achieves his target or not, that does not matter because he does things sincerely for the people; he is not doing anything for himself. He performs his duties in good faith; people love it and leaders like him.

Rajkumar Ranjan, we all know him; he needs no introduction to the people of Manipur. He has been inducted as MOS for External Affairs Ministry and Ministry of Education. He is an environmentally friendly erudite, very passionate about nature. He has great zeal to work for the people and enjoys talking with the crowd.

Tombi, his man-Friday maintains that–“he is too active, he keeps doing something or the other, cannot compete with him”. Let’s pray some marvelous things come out from this intellectual, not only for the region & State but also for the whole country.

Ms. Pratima Bhowmik, Tripura MP is a simple, very down to earth and energetic lady. She has been inducted in the Union Ministry . She is extremely social and loves to move freely with the masses. She is a first time Minister holding the charge of Social Justice and Environment. She is one of the senior most BJP leaders of Tripura, a Science graduate, and has played Kabaddi and Kho Kho. Let us hope her simplicity and sincerity bring positive changes all over.

There was a Chief Minister, name should not be taken, - he used to say, “once fired, have you ever seen the bullet coming back to the barrel ?”. But he was a committed politician; if a promised work was not done he compensated by giving some other work; but he will never return the gratitude money given in advance.

Now the pertinent question in Delhi is-what will happen to the investments made for something or the other ?–will the new incumbents return the investment or do the promised jobs of the former ? Many are perhaps worried about their investments. What a shuffling Sirji! Middlemen and brokers are crying.

Special thanks to ‘7 Lok Kalyan Marg’ for ending our Ministerial drought of 17 long years and now we are having celebrating despite the pandemic.


* Free Thinker wrote this article for The Sangai Express
This article was webcasted on July 15 2021.



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