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Has the PM lost his way? Tell us!

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June 22, 2006 11:43 IST
Two years ago the United Progressive Alliance government came into office promising change.

With three years left of its term in office Dr Manmohan Singh's government appears to have lost its way. Often leading to the question: Is the prime minister in charge?

Everyone knew it won't be an easy task to head a coalition of this kind. Unlike the previous National Democratic Alliance dispensation, where the supporting parties didn't have the numerical strength to really rock the boat, this government is vulnerable with the Left Front commanding a decisive number of MPs.

And it is no secret that the Left is unhappy with the economic policies of Dr Singh's government.

But the economy -- where India will import wheat after 30 years of food self-sufficiency; where inflation is riding shotgun on the galloping fuel prices -- is not the only area of concern. In other spheres as well, Cabinet ministers often seem to give the impression that their agenda is different from the prime minister's -- a notable instance being Human Resources Development Minister Arjun Singh hijacking the reservation debate. Or an ally, the Nationalist Congress Party, voting with the Bharatiya Janata Party and Shiv Sena in the Rajya Sabha election in Maharashtra.

Plus, there is the prime minister's seemingly tentative ties with Congress president Sonia Gandhi. For a party which has forgotten to keep the prime ministership and party presidentship separate, it was clear that this would be a troublesome area. And so it has been. Is the government working to the party's advantage, and not the nation's, is one question that gets asked often. The other being, is Sonia Gandhi the real power behind the throne, Dr Singh being merely a front?

Dr Singh's breakthrough has been in external affairs, his pet area after the economy. But it is domestic governance that will matter three years hence, assuming that's when he will seek a fresh public mandate.

Do you think the prime minister and his government are on the right track?

Do you think the government will last its full term?

Will there be a sudden realignment of numbers within this Lok Sabha?

Tell us what YOU think!