A week after the Cabinet reshuffle, former Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh finally took charge as the new Science, Technology and Earth Sciences Minister today. Mr Deshmukh was reluctant to take over the ministry as he was removed from the politically high profile Rural Development Ministry. Mr Deshmukh is the fourth Science and Technology Minister in 18 months.
Asked on Tuesday if he saw it as a demotion, he had said, "There is no demotion...at the Central level, you can only be a Cabinet minister and that is equivalent to being promoted. There is no demotion then, politics is like kho-kho."
In fact, Mr Deshmukh had skipped the swearing-in ceremony at Rashtrapati Bhawan to lobby for the post of president of the Mumbai Cricket Association. He beat former India captain Dilip Vengsarkar last week to become the chief of Mumbai Cricket Association. Mr Deshmukh,66, belongs to the Latur district in the Marathwada region of Maharashtra.