Business Standard in a scathing indictment in its editorial has asked for oil minister Murli Deora's head. It is much like Alice in Wonderland with a clarion call of 'Off with his head' going out loud and clear. When a respected newspaper like BS in its editorial asks for a change, then the widespread indignation that the oil minister's role in the gas row has created is a lesson in itself for the political class.
Titled - 'Move Mr Deora' - the editorial fulminates on the Murli Deora's partisan role in the matter. Saying that the oil minister has offered no clarity whatsoever in his defence in the floor of the house on Monday, BS says that it is well known that Deora is a close friend of Mukesh Ambani, the RIL chairman and as such his role is suspect because there is a conflict of interest. BS writes, "Changing Mr Deora's portfolio is a first step... The Government cannot afford to have its name dragged into a battle between two corporate giants." Saying that the blandness of Deora's responses have bene noteworthy with Deora repeating the old line that public interest being superior to the deal between the two brothers.
In any case, it appears that Deora's fabulous run in Shastri Bhawan might be over for he is becoming increasingly forgetful these days. Mail Today in its whispers column - Raisina Tattle - on Wednesday writes that Deora now forgets where his car is parked to which way his office is located in parliament. A man once known as Kaka to the two Ambani brothers has a new epithet in Delhi. He is now called gaswale Kaka. Reportedly he is the butt of jokes even amongst his colleagues who refer to him by his new moniker gaswale uncle. His barefaced support for Mukesh Ambani has left many in government deeply embarrassed. BS has argued for his departure very coherently and cogently.