Last reshuffle, but 2 seats left for DMK: PM

In a surprise statement, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said resuffle of his Council of Ministers is the last before the Lok Sabha polls in 2014 but two slots have been kept vacant for DMK as part of "coalition dharma".

Updated: Jul 12, 2011, 18:52 PM IST

New Delhi: In a surprise statement, Prime
Minister Manmohan Singh said Tuesday`s resuffle of his Council
of Ministers is the last before the Lok Sabha polls in 2014
but two slots have been kept vacant for DMK as part of
"coalition dharma".

Talking to reporters after the swearing-in of the 11
ministers at Rashtrapati Bhavan, Singh said the resuffle
reflects a "balance necessary between various states,
consideration of efficiency, consideration of continuity" in
the government.
"As far as I am concerned this is the last reshuffle
before we go to polls (in 2014)," he said, adding "This
exercise is as comprehensive as possible."

Asked whether he anticipated problems after the resuffle
because of some ministers being unhappy, Singh said, "there
are bound to be problems when there is some redistribution of
portfolios. We have taken into account the best interests of
the country."
At the same time, he said two ministerial slots have
been kept vacant for DMK. "It is part of our coalition
dharma...I hope their decision will be coming soon," the Prime
Minister said.

DMK, which lost two ministerial berths due to
resignation of A Raja and Dayanidhi Maran in the wake of
allegations against them in the 2G scam, is expected to decide
on filling those slots during its General Council meeting on
July 23.

When pointed out that the government was facing problems
and whether he was hopeful of overcoming these, Singh said,
"definitely, there is no doubt."

PTI