Manmohan, Media and Opposition

I watched the whole of Manmohan’s press interactions today. He kept on emphasizing that he is not a lame duck prime minister. Manmohan Singh vowed to stay in office to press ahead with reforms. I shall wish the people to judge by two promises he made.

Let us wait till the end of the budget session after which he promised to have a major cabinet reshuffle. Will he able to touch any of the strong weight poor performer or unscrupulous minister? Will he be giving some challenging ministries to the young brigade already in ministry and are subordinating the heavy weights?

Manmohan has also promised that no wrongdoers would be spared. He didn’t provide a time-frame. He must not keep the people of India waiting for long. Can he not bring the wealth siphoned back in nation’s exchequer through an ordinance with a clause of paying back with interest if the courts acquit the wrongdoers?

However, I am shocked that none of the editors present there asked questions on the performances of his ministers. How many kms of roads were built against a promise of 20 km per day? Why are we failing to provide power to the country men even after so many years? What is the reduction in the number of cases in the courts? How long will it take to his Bharat Nirman targets that were to be finished by 2009? What time will it take to execute at least some of the projects in Orissa, Chattisgarh, and Jharkhand? What is the progress on the Sibal’s dream plans of skilling and educating India?

Why the editors were so meek with no concern on the speed of development and reform? Many questions would have come from the elite journalists of the small screen.

And then why is the major opposition party also failing badly to take up these development issues, be it of physical infrastructure or HDI, where the government keeps on promising with no significant improvements? It never came out even with a strong denial of the prime minister’s charge on it for blackmailing?

Many perceive to day that Manmohan’s aura is fast fading.
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PS: Views of Suhel Seth: “The press conference held last week by Manmohan Singh, India’s prime minister, was an unmitigated disaster. Mr Singh’s enormous brand was felled at the hands of some very reasonable television folks. None of them was out for the kill. But then the prey succumbed even without any poisoned arrows being fired.”

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