New Delhi: Doing away with one of the relics of coalition politics, Prime Minister Narendra Modi Saturday abolished all 30 ministerial groups to ensure that his colleagues heading various portfolios take faster decisions with more accountability.
Criticizing the move, the Congress said the EGOMs and GOMs brought "a collective multi- disciplinary approach" to issues of governance.
There were nine empowered groups of ministers (EGOMs) and 21 groups of ministers (GOMs) in operation. They were to take decisions on various matters -- and several of them on matters seen as tricky -- before coming up before the cabinet for consideration.
"This (the decision to abolish the groups) would expedite the process of decision making and usher in greater accountability in the system," said an official statement from the Prime Minister's Office.
"The ministries and departments will now process the issues pending before the EGOMs and GOMs and take appropriate decisions at the level of ministries and departments itself."
In a way, the decision to abolish the groups also poses greater accountability on Modi himself as he will now have to adjudicate matters where there are differences among cabinet colleagues, rather than let a panel of colleagues deliberate on them first.
Congress leader and former union minister Manish Tewari tweeted: "While it is the prerogative of every government to run an administration in a manner which they deem appropriate, but it would be germane to point that EGOMs/ GOMs brought a collective multi-disciplinary approach to issues of governance as most matters have inter ministerial implications."