In what came as a big and commendable promotion, Nirmala Sitharaman was named the new defense minister, only the second woman to hold the post since former prime minister Indira Gandhi and the first woman to become a full-time Defense Minister.
Previously serving as the Commerce Minister of State, she made giant strides and her promotion is seen as the result of hard work at her previous post.
She was overwhelmed and humbled by the promotion and said- “Somebody who has come from a small town, grown into the party with all the support of the leadership, and if given such responsibility, it just makes you feel sometimes that cosmic grace is there. Otherwise, it is impossible.”
The post of Defence Minister is crucial, considering the fact both eastern and western fronts are on high alert.
Sitharaman’s elevation was totally out of the blue as Nitin Gadkari’s name was also in the vine for the post while others expected Jaitley to keep the post following his success in the Doklam crisis.
As Sitharaman moves into Raisina Hill, the all powerful CCS, which also includes the prime minister, home minister Rajnath Singh, finance minister Arun Jaitley and external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj, will now feature two women.
Nothing carries the message of women’s empowerment more than battle-hardened generals doffing their hats to a female boss. As far as symbolisms go, it is a powerful one.
And, the appointment of Nirmala Sitharaman is the most powerful statement delivered by Modi in the Cabinet reshuffle.
“I am sure, now that I have an extremely competent successor in Nirmala Sitharaman, she will carry the road forward,” Jaitley was seen congratulating Sitharaman.
-with inputs from the ‘FirstPost’