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After Pranab's exit, WHO is No. 2 in the government?

Last updated on: July 5, 2012 21:00 IST

Who is No. 2 in the government?

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With the exit of Pranab Mukherjee from the Council of Ministers, Sharad Pawar's name was listed after Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on the official website of the Prime Minister's Office, triggering speculation on Thursday as to whether he was now the number two in the government.

The name of Pawar, the leader of Nationalist Congress Party, appeared above senior leaders of Congress like A K Antony, P Chidambaram and S M Krishna, who are all members of the Cabinet Committee on Security.

This triggered speculation as to whether Pawar was now the number two in the government as he had taken the position of Mukherjee in the list.

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Image: Sharad Pawar


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Who is No. 2 in the government?

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Earlier, Mukherjee was the de facto number two in the government. He would stay in Delhi whenever the prime minister had to go abroad on official visits.

When asked about this, PMO sources sought to downplay the issue, saying it was merely an exercise by those managing the website. Pawar's name came up after the removal of the name of Mukherjee, who resigned on June 26 to contest the Presidential poll, they said.

"It is just a website cleaning exercise," a source said, insisting that there was nothing political in the development.

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Image: Pranab Mukherjee

Tags: Mukherjee , PMO , Pawar , Delhi

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Who is No. 2 in the government?

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Significantly, by evening, the entire list of Cabinet ministers was missing from the website, which only carried those of ministers of state (independent charge) and ministers of state.

The Congress refused to comment on the issue.

After the exit of Mukherjee, Congress is also in the process of deciding the Leader of the Lok Sabha, a position held by the former finance minister.

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Image: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh


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