PUDUCHERRY: With all eyes on the formation of the Narendra Modi ministry, the point of interest in Puducherry is whether newly elected All India NR Congress (AINRC) MP R Radhakrishnan will be given a berth in the Central ministry. The Puducherry unit of the BJP has taken an initiative in this direction.
“We will be seeking a ministerial berth for Radhakrishnan in New Delhi,” BJP Puducherry president M Visweswaran told Express.
A six-member delegation led by Visweswaran, comprising general secretary R Saminathan, former president R Kesavelu, treasurer K G Shankar and executive members Thangavelu and Paramthaman, will visit New Delhi on Tuesday.
“We will meet Prime minister designate Narendra Modi as well as BJP president Rajnath Singh and press them for inclusion of Radhakrishnan in the ministry,” Visweswaran said.
This move has raised expectations among the people of Puducherry for Radhakrishnan‘s inclusion in the ministry. The BJP could strengthen its ties with the AINRC and form an electoral alliance for the 2016 Assembly elections, hoping to enter the Puducherry Assembly where it remains unrepresented.
BJP’s Pon Randhakrishnan from Kanyakumari, Dr Anbumani Ramadoss of the PMK from Dharmapuri and Radhakrishnan were elected, while the AIADMK swept the polls by winning 37 of 40 seats. The NDA will certainly consider the MPs for ministerial berths to give representation to this region. Otherwise it might appear that the region is being neglected, said a political analyst.
Puducherry, which has had four Ministers of State in the Central cabinet, is now hoping that the BJP will give the UT its fifth Central minister. S Mohan Kumaramangalam, elected on a Congress ticket in the 1971 parliamentary polls, served as Union Minister of State for Industries in the Indira Gandhi Cabinet, Aravinda Bala Pajanoor, elected on the AIADMK ticket in 1977, served as Union Minister for Petroleum in the Morarji Desai ministry, M O H Farook served as Union Minister of State for Civil Aviation in the P V Narashima Rao ministry in 1991-1992 and V Narayanasamy served as Union Minister of State (2009-2014) in the Manmohan Singh government.
Radhakrishnan is not lacking in the qualities required for a Minister of State, says an AINRC functionary. “His inclusion will strengthen relations between the Centre and Puducherry,” said Visweswaran.