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Modi rushes to Jaitley's residence after latter opts out of new cabinet


New Delhi, May 29: Hours after senior BJP leader Arun Jaitley requested that he would like to stay away from any responsibilty in the new Modi-led government, the Prime Minister-elect on Wednesday will reportedly meet the former finance minister to re-consider his decision.

Jaitley had earlier today told PM elect Narendra Modi that he would like to stay away from "any responsibility" in the Modi government's second term in office, citing health reasons for his decision.

A file photo of Narendra Modi

Though Modi in his first term as Prime Minister had visited Jaitley's residence for 'unofficial' meetings with groups of senior editors, this is perhaps the first time that he visited the residence of a minister for an unscheduled engagement, a PTI report said.

Modi, who along with his new Cabinet are to be sworn-in on Thursday evening, drove to Jaitley's official residence in the national capital at 8:50 pm and was with him for close to 25 minutes, officials said. Modi enquired about Jaitley's health and well being, they added. Specific details about the meeting was not known immediately but the visit was possibly to convey a message that Jaitley is valued, appreciated and wanted by him and his government.

PM is likely to ask Arun Jaitley to reconsider his earlier decision and remain in Government, news agency ANI had reported earlier.

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Writing to the Prime Minister elect earlier today, Jaitley cited health reasons for his decision. Jaitley said staying away from any responsibility will help him concentrate on his treatment and health.

Jaitley, who spoke about serious health challenges that he had faced over the last 18 months, followed up on that conversation with a formal letter to the prime minister. He also put out a copy of the letter on his Twitter handle.

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