Foreign minister SM Krishna and other ministers resign ahead of cabinet reshuffle

India News Bulletin Desk

Indian government’s foreign minister SM Krishna, who played a big role in improving India and Pakistan’s bilateral relations in the recent months, has resigned ahead of the cabinet reshuffle on Sunday, according to reports.

SM Krishna resigns as Indian foreign minister before cabinet reshuffle
SM Krishna resigns as Indian foreign minister before cabinet reshuffle
Image: Indian Ministry of External Affairs Flickr

The 80-year-old minister said he was making way for the youngsters in the cabinet as he handed over his resignation to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. He had held the role of External Affairs minister since May 2009.

Alongside Krishna, other ministers including Ambika Soni,the Information and Broadcasting minister; Mahadev Khandela, the minister of State Justice and Empowerment; Subodh Kant Sahay, Tourism minister and Mukul Wasnik, the Social Justice and Empowerment minister also resigned. 

The new October Indian cabinet reshuffle is likely to take place on Sunday, October 28 and will be announced by the prime minister.

It will be the second cabinet reshuffle in four months. Earlier in July, the prime minister reshuffled the cabinet which saw P. Chidambaram become India’s finance minister and SushilKumar Shinde become the home minister. The July reshuffle was the outcome of former finance minister Pranab Mukherjee resigning from his post to be elected as India’s president.

The reshuffle will see not just existing ministers handle new portfolios but also an inflow of new cabinet members including Telugu actor-turned politician Chiranjeevi. There are high speculations in the media about the role of Congress heir Rahul Gandhi in the new cabinet. However, it is not clear what portfolio he will be handed.

The prime minister has not yet decided who he will appoint as India’s next foreign affairs minister, after Krishna vacated the role.

As the foreign minister, Krishna most recently has tried to strengthen India’s ties with its neighbour Pakistan.

In September 2012, he met his Pakistani counterpart Hina Rabbani Khar in a bid to improve India and Pakistan’s relations which had soured after the November 2008 Mumbai terrorist attack involving Pakistani militants. The two ministers signed a new visa agreement to ease travel between the two countries. He also took measures to improve bilateral trade relations as well as cultural exchanges between the two countries.

Krishna also visited Tajikistan in July this year to strengthen the countries’ economic and energy ties.

He has also served as a former chief minister of Karnataka state and a former governor of the Maharashtra state.


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