Smriti Irani no more fire and brimstone

The former TV star who went on to become a cabinet minister has now seemingly fallen out of favour, clearly indicating that prime minister Narendra Modi has his ear to the ground

rahul

Rahul Dass | July 6, 2016


#Textile Ministry   #Narendra Modi   #JNU Row   #HRD Ministry   #Cabinet Reshuffle   #BJP   #Smriti Irani  


Smriti Zubin Irani’s fall from grace is dramatic. The minister who would regularly wade into nasty controversies had it coming all this while and one needn’t be taken aback.

Irani headed a crucial ministry that dealt with students and education and she made a complete hash of it. The unnecessary confrontation over the Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) row and the poor handling of the Rohith Vemula case showed that she lacked the gentle, mature touch that one needs to have while dealing with students.

Her term began on an uneasy note, with her degree being questioned. Even after a couple of years, it is still not absolutely clear as to what exactly her qualifications are. It only shows the government in poor light. The last two years have been sheer agony to see a ministry being led by a politician whose own educational qualification is under cloud.

She had to fill big shoes as the HRD minister. The ministry had earlier been led by astute politicians like PV Narasimha Rao and before that, when it used to be the ministry of education, the ministers were stalwarts like Maulana Abul Kalam Azad, MC Chagla and redoubtable Fakhruddin Ali Ahmed. The shoes proved to be too big for Irani.

Besides courting controversy, what did she do in the past couple of years? She wanted the national tricolor fluttering on top of a 207 foot pole in the universities.

Nationalistically, it was an admirable move. But, educationally, it made no sense. There are more urgent and pressing matters which need to be addressed in the Indian universities, which are not in the pink of health.

Then there was the brouhaha after Bihar minister Ashok Choudhary addressed as her “Dear Smriti Irani ji”. The minister got quite upset and retorted with a Facebook post in which she wrote: “While many working women battle this challenge in confined working spaces, I spat it out on twitter for my office travels with me”. Interestingly, she simply skirted the key issue which Choudhary had raised “kabhi rajniti aur bhashan se waqt mile to shiksha niti ki taraf bhi dhyan de (… when you find time from politics and speeches do look at the education policy too)”

The minister completely missed the larger issue. She is supposed to transform the education system and prove her mettle through her work and not through her words. That’s when Modi stepped in and perhaps decided enough is enough.

Though the move comes ahead of the Uttar Pradesh election, Smriti Irani is no longer the person to watch out. Instead, it is Apna Dal’s Anupriya Singh Patel who now matters. Her inclusion a signal that genuine political heft and being a doer counts.

One now waits with bated breath with what Smriti Irani will do at the textile ministry. And this should be new minister of state for textile Ajay Tamta’s first concern too.

 

Comments

 

Other News

Five Ws of Gandhi assassination

The Murderer, the Monarch and the Fakir: A New Investigation of Mahatma Gandhi’s Assassination By Appu Esthose Suresh and Priyanka Kotamraju HarperCollins, 240 pages, Rs 399 The bloodied shawl has long since faded to a vague brown and now sports

13 states told increase Covid-19 testing

In view of several countries reporting surges in Covid-19 cases and many developed nations facing fourth and fifth waves despite high numbers of vaccinations, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare has written to the states of Nagaland, Maharashtra, Sikkim, Kerala, Goa, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, J&am

PMC Bank proposed resolution: Areas of darkness at the end of tunnel

A few months after the Punjab and Maharashtra Co-Operative Bank Ltd (PMC Bank) was put under moratorium in September 2019, I met an announcer in a function on banking organised by an industry body, with which I have been associated. She was young, pretty beautiful and had a sweet voice and modulation. She

Atal Innovation Mission and Vigyan Prasar collaborate to engage with science and Atal Tinkering Labs

 Niti Aayog’s flagship initiative, Atal Innovation Mission (AIM), recently announced to collaborate with Vigyan Prasar, an autonomous organization of the Department of Science and Technology, Government o

PM to lay the foundation stone of Noida International Airport on November 25

 In a major development, Uttar Pradesh is poised to become the only state in India to have five international airports, as Prime Minister Narendra Modi is to lay the foundation stone of the Noida Internation

President Kovind honored India’s Cleanest cities at Swachh Amrit Mahotsav

n a recent prestigious event the President of India Ram Nath Kovind felicitated the awardees of the cleanest cities of India at the ‘Swachh Amrit Mahotsav’as part of Swachh

Visionary Talks: Dr. Naresh Trehan, CMD Medanta Heart Institute with Kailashnath Adhikari



Archives

Current Issue

Opinion

Facebook    Twitter    Google Plus    Linkedin    Subscribe Newsletter

Twitter