Khurshid named foreign minister in India reshuffle

NEW DELHI, Oct 28, 2012 (AFP) – Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh appointed Salman Khurshid as his new foreign minister as he brought seven new faces into cabinet Sunday in the biggest reshuffle since his 2009 re-election. Khurshid, 59, replaces the 80-year-old S. M. Krishna as the top diplomat and his post as the law minister goes to Ashwani Kumar, a spokesman in the prime minister’s office told AFP.

“The prime minister wanted someone young yet very experienced to head the foreign ministry. Salman Khurshid was the top choice,” said another senior official in the prime minister’s office on condition of anonymity.

Khurshid has held several ministerial positions and has served as a junior foreign minister in 1990s.

Speaking to reporters after a swearing-in ceremony for the new ministers, Singh said he expected that his new team would remain in office up until the next general election which is due in spring 2014. “Probably this is the last reshuffle,” Singh said at the presidential palace in the capital New Delhi.