Rishi Sunak has been appointed Britain’s Prime Minister by King Charles III on Tuesday, according to the palace. On Monday Sunak, 42, became the leader of the Conservative Party after the withdrawal of Penny Mordaunt from the race. Earlier on Sunday, former Prime Minister Boris Johnson called off his comeback bid as he said he could not hope to lead a united party.
After meeting King Charles, Sunak told the reporters, “Right now our country is facing a profound economic crisis…Putin’s war in Ukraine has destabilized markets the world over…Liz Truss (who has just submitted her resignation to the job of prime minister) was not wrong to work for economic goals of this country. I admire her. But some mistakes were made. Not ill intentioned, in fact the opposite, nonetheless mistakes.”
“I was appointed to fix mistakes…I will unite our country not with words but action. I will work day in and day out to deliver. Trust is earned, and I will earn…It is a mandate that belongs to and unite all of us. At the heart of the mandate is our manifesto.”
The first Indian-origin Hindu Prime Minister of Britain is the youngest in two hundred years old history of the country which an ancient democracy. He is the third Prime Minister of the country within a span of a little more than two months. Truss left the office after 49 days wishing Sunak every success. She said she remained convinced that Britain needed to be bold in order to resolve its problems. She had the distinction of having the shortest tenure as PM in British history.
“The force is within you, Rishi” said the headline of Sun newspaper. The “Daily Mail” hailed it a new dawn for Britain. The Guardian however highlighted Sunak’s warning that the Conservatives have to either unite or die. Guardian is left leaning. It is evident that the media overall is in favour of Sunak. He has the support of the markets too. Sunak has twin challenges to take on. It is as difficult a task to unite his party as fixing the economy. Sunak will be observed very closely from this moment. He has to form his Cabinet which is a daunting exercise in itself. Then he has to face the Parliament on Wednesday for Prime Minister’s Questions.
As Shashi Tharoor rightly said the British have outgrown their worst attributes of racism by electing a person from minority group, that too a Hindu, who celebrates Diwali and Krishnashtami and who had taken oath in Parliament on Bhagavat Gita. The debate in India whether we can outgrow our debilitating religious dividing lines as the British could will go on for long.