Mahajan, Jaitley trade places; Swaraj may move to parliamentary affairs

NEW DELHI: In a development that is likely to significantly impact the media sector, information technology, communications and parliamentary affairs minister Pramod Mahajan resigned from his post tonight. He is set to take charge as party general secretary.

The move comes just ahead of Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee's cabinet reshuffle slated for tomorrow. As per the information available from political sources, Mahajan will be swapping places with the current incumbent, former information and broadcasting (I&B) minister Arun Jaitley whose most recent portfolio was as Union law minister.

Rumours were flying amidst the thick air of intense political activity in the capital. There was strong speculation that I&B minister Swaraj was being shifted to parliamentary affairs. Minister of state for coals and mines Ravi Shankar Prasad was reportedly coming in to occupy Shastri Bhavan. Prasad, who is the brother-in-law of journalist turned Rajya Sabha MP Rajeev Shukla, was however, not expected to get cabinet rank. The political grape vine has it that he would be made minister of state for I&B with independent charge.

Mahajan's move to direct party activities is seen as a clear signal that the BJP has set its sights on the upcoming state elections as well as looking ahead to the general elections due in 2004. Mahajan is one of the ruling party's principal fund raisers.

Mahajan's departure from the cabinet puts a question mark on the long stagnating communications convergence bill of which he was a big votary. How Mahajan's expected replacement for this portfolio, Jaitley feels about the Bill that many have said is unworkable in its present form, should be worth watching.

Some observers also say that the case of Star India's application for uplinking for its Star News channel may get a shot in the arm with this development. This is because it was only Mahajan's ministry that had yet to give its comment on the note forwarded to it on the matter by I&B minister Sushma Swaraj. It is only after all the concerned ministries have given their comments the proposal can be put before the cabinet for further action.

Of course all this would be turned on its head if Swaraj also moves out of Shastri Bhavan. Then it all becomes totally unpredictable.

Latest Reads
World Television Premiere of Judwaa 2 on Star Gold

This Christmas, Star Gold dons the Santa hat promising to indulge its viewers with double the entertainment, double the excitement and double the fun! The Home of Blockbusters announces the World Television Premiere of one of the most sought after films of the year – Judwaa 2. The film that raked...

Television TV Channels Movie Channels
Eros International inks co-production pact with Drishyam Films

Eros International Media Ltd (Eros International) has signed a four-film co-production deal with leading production house, Drishyam Films.

Television Production House Film Production
ITW Consulting bags in-stadia ad rights for Ind & Aus tours of SA 2018

ITW Consulting, India-based sports management company, has acquired in-stadia advertising rights for the Indian and Australian Tours of South Africa for 2017/2018. ITW Consulting rights will market and sell these in-stadia advertising rights to non-South African companies and entities.

Television TV Channels Sports
Nickelodeon kid's choice awards 2017

Nickelodeon Kid's Choice Awards (KCA) 2017, presented by Dabur Red Paste, powered by Jolly Rancher in association with Yellow Diamond and Funskool and Apis Honey took place on 15 December 2017.

Television TV Channels Kids
Focus Group to launch Kannada news channel

Focus Group is now focusing on south India with its upcoming news channel Focus TV Kannada News.

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting
Panchal helps Star Bharat top Hindi GECs across genres

Optimystix Entertainment’s Indian comedy sitcom Kya Haal Mr. Panchal on Star India’s FTA Hindi GEC Star Bharat has been amongst Broadcast Audience Research Council of India’s (BARC) weekly list of top-five Hindi GEC programmes in the HSM markets, more so during primetime. In week 49 of 2017:...

Television TV Channels Viewership
&Privé HD celebrates the birthday of the Steven Spielberg

&Privé HD, the English movie channel, presents Club Privé: Spielberg Edition – a curation of five of Spielberg’s best movies exploring different sides of human emotions. The special will air from 18 to 22 December at 11 pm only on &Privé HD.

Television TV Channels English Entertainment
Green Gold’s golden Mumbai launch

MUMBAI: Green Gold Animation is all set to hit the green running with its new offshoot Golden Robot. The Rajiv Chilaka-run animation outfit has been wowing everyone with its deals for animation series with both Netflix and Amazon Prime.  But the occasion this time was the celebration of the launch...

Television Production House Film Production
Gujarat elections boost news channel ratings as Republic continues to lead English News

BENGALURU: Rahul Gandhi’s shenanigans and Narendra Modi’s sudden and unexpected belligerence at rallies leading up to the Gujarat state assembly elections have resulted in bolstering sagging news viewership, especially for the English news genre. According to Broadcast Audience Research Council of...

Television TV Channels News Broadcasting

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories