Don't want responsibility: Jaitley opts out of new govt citing poor health

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley says he won't take up a post in the new government.
Just a day before Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his council of ministers are sworn in for a second term, Arun Jaitley, who held the important finance portfolio in the first term, has written to him and requested that he should not be given any responsibility for now and be allowed time off due to his ill health.

 

This means there will be a new finance minister. According to bureaucratic and political buzz, Nirmala Sitharaman, Piyush Goyal or BJP President Amit Shah himself could be considered to take charge at North Block.

 

Jaitley on Wednesday tweeted a copy of the letter he had sent to Modi. “I am writing to you formally to request you that I should be allowed a reasonable time for myself, my treatment and my health, and therefore, not be part of any responsibility, for the present, in the new government,” he wrote in the letter to Modi.

 

“During the last eighteen months, I have had some serious health challenges... After the campaign had concluded and you were leaving for Kedarnath, I had orally informed you that even though I was able to discharge the responsibilities assigned to me during the campaign, I would in future like to keep away from any responsibility,” he said.

 

Since becoming finance minister in 2014, Jaitley has undergone a bariatric surgery, a kidney transplant, a surgery in the US to remove a growth, and he is said to be undergoing chemotherapy currently. He had taken leave from finance ministry twice in the last 13 months and could not even present the 2019-20 interim budget.

I have today written a letter to the Hon’ble Prime Minister, a copy of which I am releasing: pic.twitter.com/8GyVNDcpU7

Arun Jaitley (@arunjaitley) May 29, 2019