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Calls to Mr. Gandhi’s office Sunday were not answered.

It was possible that he did not want to be too closely associated with the current government, which has been tainted by a raft of scandals.

The reshuffle Sunday — needed, in part, to fill seats left vacant after a coalition partner bolted — brought seven new ministers into the Cabinet, and saw the entry of 15 junior ministers in a restructuring that brought younger faces into the leadership.

Former Law Minister Salman Khurshid, who was named the new foreign minister, is 20 years younger than his predecessor, and most of the other ministers sworn in Sunday are in their fifties or early sixties.

In Indian politics, that is considered to be a relative youth movement.

Mr. Singh said the shuffle was the last major Cabinet shake-up expected before the next national election.

But even in promoting some of the younger Congress lawmakers, the party leadership is cautious that they know their place.

“It’s an unspoken rule in the Congress that nobody can, or will, be allowed to outshine Rahul Gandhi among the younger lot,” Ms. Ramachandran said.