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Mukherjee terms Cabinet reshuffle report to be media imagination


April 24, 2012 - New Delhi

Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Tuesday termed reports that four senior UPA ministers have written to Congress President Sonia Gandhi offering to step down from their posts to be media imagination, and said all leaders are doing the party work whether in government or outside it.

"You know you people always are in the habit of some sort of imagination. Everybody is doing party work whether they are in government or whether they outside the government. Therefore, I have nothing to comment on it," he said.

Several senior ministers of the Manmohan Singh-led UPA-II Cabinet have reportedly written to Congress President Sonia Gandhi, saying that they would like to be relieved of their portfolios and would like to work for the party.

According to reports, Union Law and Justice Minister Salman Khurshid, Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh, Health and Family Welfare Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad and Overseas Indian Affairs Minister Vyalar Ravi are the senior leaders, who have written in this regard to Sonia Gandhi.

Senior leaders could be replaced by younger Members of Parliament in the Union Cabinet, who may now be given important portfolios and extra responsibility.

The plan to revive the Congress has been taken following the initial report of the A.K. Antony Committee, which looked into reasons for the party's extremely poor show in the recent Assembly elections in five states.

The final report, which will be submitted to Sonia Gandhi by end of April, points out that a weak organisation was the main reason behind the party's rout.

Sonia Gandhi had set up the Antony Committee with Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit and Union Power Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde as the two other members following the Assembly elections rout, particularly to study the Congress's show in Uttar Pradesh where Amethi MP and General Secretary Rahul Gandhi had worked very hard and almost made it a prestige issue.

ANI

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