Just before Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s oath-taking ceremony tomorrow, outgoing Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has decided not to take up any active responsibility in the new government due to his poor health. 

In a letter to the Prime Minister, Jaitley said he had orally informed Modi about his desire to not be a part of the new BJP government so that it enabled him to concentrate on his treatment and health. “I am writing to you to formally request you that I should be allow.

He has not been seen in public for at least two weeks but has been publishing blogs and messages on social media. 

Jaitley, a lawyer-turned politician, often acted as chief troubleshooter in the Modi government. In the past five years, Jaitley steered through parliament major economic legislation such as a Goods and Services Tax (GST) – which had languished for nearly two decades – and has defended controversial policies for the government. 

Modi had given him the responsibility of three ministries when he first took office in 2014, finance, defence and information and broadcasting ministries. 

A diabetic, Jaitley’s health issues became worse after he had a kidney transplant in May last year. He also had to skip the interim budget in February when he was in hospital in the US.