Some problems take care of themselves: Arun Jaitley on Sena-BJP row

New Delhi: Amid simmering tension with Sena which appears to be on verge of parting ways with BJP over a spat on Cabinet expansion, Union Minister Arun Jaitley today said some problems take care of themselves.

As he took over as the Information and Broadcasting minister, Jaitley, who already holds charge of the Finance Ministry, said the problem would be solved and stressed that some problems find their own solution. "Some problems take care of themselves," he said when asked by reporters about the BJP-Shiv Sena row.

Sena-BJP ties hit a new low in the wake of a spat over Cabinet expansion at the Centre and failure to accommodate the Sena in the Maharashtra government in Mumbai. Sena MP Anil Desai not taking oath as Union Minister yesterday and the induction of Suresh Prabhu, who had been in the Shiv Sena as Cabinet Minister, had added to the growing chasm between the friends-turned-foes.

Arun Jaitley
Arun Jaitley

The simmering tension between them came to a boil yesterday as Desai left for Mumbai from Delhi airport without attending the swearing-in ceremony. Desai had returned to Mumbai on orders of Sena supremo Uddhav Thackeray whose party accused Prime Minister Narendra Modi as also the BJP of a host of broken promises and heaping "humiliation after humiliation" on it.

Union Minister Anant Geete is the lone Shiv Sena representative in the Union Cabinet and the developments could culminate in his being asked by the Sena leadership to quit the government. Speaking to reporters, Jaitley, who took over as the Information and Broadcasting minister from Prakash Javadekar, said it is through the Information and Broadcasting ministry that communication of the Government and its ministries is done.

Referring to his previous stint in the I&B ministry, Jaitley said the domain of the media has now expanded immensely. "I have been in this ministry before, there was more print media than electronic media. Today, there has been a lot of growth of the radio and digital mediums.

"There was a time, when the major work of this ministry was Doordarshan and All India Radio. It is still a major area,
but this changed information process scenario, this ministry has to look at that," he said. Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore, who joined as Minister of State in the ministry, said there was perceived to be a communication gap between the government and the media, and only "one way communication" was taking place.

"I think one of the most important thing for this government after it came was to take immediate and important steps to put the economy and national prestige and security on track. And hence perhaps you get the impression that the communication was a little stifled. However, that is not the intention at all.

"With Arunji here and with myself as MoS, we'll make all efforts to be available to you and all sorts of two way communication, as you refer, will be there," he said. Rathore was also asked by reporters to explain the expanded size of the Council of Ministers when the government itself had been talking about minimum government and maximum governance and synergy.

He said minimum government and maximum governance is a concept and an attitude that the Prime Minister wants all in the government to have. "Numbers are symbolical. Right in the beginning when we said that with lesser ministers, we are giving lesser interference, it is symbolic. Now when the policies have been decided, direction for the whole nation has been decided, to implement those policies, we need larger number of people in the ministries and yet it will still remain minimum government because interference is going to be limited," he said.

The minister said the idea is to be a catalyst in the progress of the nation. Asked for his focus area in the ministry, he said the "vision of the Prime Minister" is the objective and the target. Rathore was also asked as to whether there will be a greater projection of sports as he himself has been an ace sportsman.

"I think every medium, every sector, every field where there is skill, where there is any Indian doing well needs to be projected, whichever medium that is," he said.

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