The newly appointed ministers have hit the ground running right from the word go with a clear message from the Prime Minister on delivery without distraction.
The impact of the message is clearly visible as all ministers have gone into top gear. Union Home Minister Amit Shah has held a series of security review meetings, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh flew straight to Jammu and Kashmir for an on-the-spot assessment and Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal had a busy weekend.
The ministers are working on a 100-day plan that had been prepared well in advance as the party’s victory in the elections was seen as a foregone conclusion.
During the review meetings by Amit Shah that went on for about two hours, officials said special focus was on Kashmir, the internal security situation in the country and threats from militant groups in Pakistan and Bangladesh. Soon after the meeting, Shah held talks with Jammu and Kashmir Governor Satya Pal Malik over the situation in the state.
After taking charge, Shah said the country’s security and welfare of the people were the key priorities for the Modi government. “Under the leadership of Modi, I will try my best to fulfil all these priorities,” he said in his first tweet after assuming charge.
On Monday, Shah also took stock of country’s internal security situation, continuing the tradition of regularly getting first-hand information from top security officials, including National Security Adviser Ajit Doval.
He was given a detailed briefing on the prevailing security situation in the country by Doval, Home Secretary Rajiv Gauba, Intelligence Bureau chief Rajiv Jain, besides others.
Apart from the hinterland, the Home Minister was apprised of the situation in Jammu and Kashmir, particularly in border areas, an official said.
The Secretary of R&AW, who attended the meeting in place of his chief, informed Shah about the security concerns in the country’s neighbourhood such as the threats from militant groups in Pakistan and Bangladesh.
The IB chief briefed him about internal security.
Informed sources said the Home Ministry’s Internal Security Department and the Jammu and Kashmir Affairs division had presented special notes.
The Jammu and Kashmir division deals with counter-terrorism, the Armed Forces (Special Powers) Act and coordination between various ministries including Defence and External Affairs.
Shah reportedly expressed concern over Maoist violence and also discussed activities of jehadi groups, particularly about those active in Kerala and adjoining states.
The Home Minister is expected to meet the chiefs of paramilitary forces including the Border Security Force, Central Reserve Police Force, Indo-Tibetan Border Police, Sashastra Seema Bal, Central Industrial Security Force and other police organisations in the coming days.
Shah will also take stock of the Delhi Police, which comes directly under the control of the Ministry. A reshuffle at the top is expected in Delhi Police.
Defence Minister Rajnath Singh took charge on Saturday and immediately held a meeting with the top military brass. He asked the chiefs of the Army, Navy and the Air Force to prepare separate presentations on the challenges and overall functioning of their respective forces.
The former Home Minister held a meeting with Army chief General Bipin Rawat, Chief of Air Staff Air Chief Marshal B.S. Dhanoa and newly-appointed Navy chief Karambir Singh at the headquarters of the Defence Ministry at Raisina Hill, during which he was apprised of the security scenario, officials said.
On Monday, Rajnath Singh visited the Siachen Glacier, the world’s highest battlefield, and praised the “tenacious resolve and unstinting commitment” of the “Siachen Warriors”. It is his first visit outside the national capital as a Defence Minister.
Piyush Goyal, who took charge as Commerce and Industry Minister on May 31, held detailed meetings with the officials of the two departments over Saturday and Sunday.
The meetings were aimed at getting familiar with the organisation of the Department of Commerce and the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade, zeroing in on the likely actionable issues and discussing the roadmap ahead, officials who attended the meetings said.
He was carefully studying and looking at the presentations made by secretaries to the two departments,” said an official.
He is also learnt to have taken up separate presentations on crucial issues like trade talks with the US, Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership trade agreement and foreign direct investment (FDI).
Human Resource Development minister Dr Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank made public the long pending draft education on the first day in office which has already led to a massive debate. (IANS)