Manmohan Singh’s jumbo sized cabinet is now in place and we can now (hopefully) look ahead to some real governance. While the power trio of Singh, Gandhi and Gandhi made all the right noises about selecting ministers on merit, the shape (and size) of the new Cabinet makes it clear that its more about mathematics (1 minster for every 7 MPs, acc to what was last heard) than merit.
In this case it may be interesting to look at the US model where successful executives from the corporate mainstream can find their way to a stint in government and back. Even Obama’s transition team for that matter drew in talent from companies such as Google! Could this lead to corporate hegemony and polarization of interests to suit certain industries/companies? Maybe, but I think we have plenty of that on board anyway. Better the known and uncovered devil than the lurking, shadowy angel anyday.
Although this election saw faces from mainstream corporate world contest the elections (take for example, Meera Sanyal from ABN Amro for the Mumbai South seat that she later lost), its not clear if Sanyal and Co have a lasting commitment to politics. As a media commentary said the other day, this is needed as politics is a full-time job. And if they dont, more’s the pity. We could do much worse than having our best managerial talent help us run the biggest enterprise of them all – the Government of India!