On June 24,the Congress organised protests against the government’s decision to debar political parties from municipal elections.

Written by Express News Service | Lucknow | Published: June 28, 2010 5:28 am

If one party protests,can another be far behind?
On June 24,the Congress organised protests against the government’s decision to debar political parties from municipal elections. On June 26,it was the turn of the BJP,which wanted to highlight the anniversary of Indira Gandhi’s emergency and the price hike of petroleum products. Waking up belatedly,the SP decided to do something. Its workers were hurriedly asked to gather at the party headquarters and photographers were requested to reach the Lucknow DM’s residence. Soon,a handful of SP workers arrived,raised slogans and burnt effigies to mark the SP’s Loktantrik Sashaktikaran Diwas (Democratic Empowerment Day).

Hardliners fight for BJP’s Hindutva face
A contest in political one-upmanship seems to have begun between Varun Gandhi and Vinay Katiyar,both known Hindutva hardliners in the state BJP. When Varun talked about replacing Mayawati’s statues with those of Lord Ram,Katiyar was quick to shoot the idea down. No spot occupied by the statue of a mortal can be used to install god’s idol,he said. Since then,Varun Gandhi has held a series of public meetings in the state. Katiyar is reportedly uneasy. For,if Varun continues to hold such meetings,he may soon replace Katiyar as the face of BJP’s hardline Hindutva in UP. Suddenly,Katiyar has become active. Last week,he organised a “Janata Jago rally” in Ambedkar Nagar where he breathed fire at the Congress. He managed to bring to the rally former BJP national president Rajnath Singh and UP party chief Surya Pratap Shahi,although it is an open secret that the Rajnath camp has no love lost for Shahi. Let’s watch what Varun will do next.

Gender equality or liability?
The government’s decision to set up a women’s battalion in PAC and also recruit 20,000 women constables over the next few years was the topic of discussion at a meeting of senior police officers held last week. Some argued that the government is courting disaster. The Mahila police stations had turned out to be a liability,they said. Also,women constables were “inefficient” and “indisciplined”,but their male superiors dare not take any action,fearing allegations of harassment. Other officers argued that if women could do well in paramilitary forces,they could do well in the UP Police as well,provided they were given responsibility and the men in the force dealt with them in a professional fashion. But you can’t reason with misogynists. The DGP reportedly ended the debate with a remark that it was a waste of time because the decision had been taken and it had to be implemented.

Birds of same feather cannot flock together
Some time ago,a bureaucrat who is retiring shortly,reportedly contacted senior Congress leaders and explained how his special knowledge in a particular subject could be an asset for the party. The leaders were impressed,and assured the babu that the party would utilise his services. This has made some other leaders uncomfortable. For,these leaders claim to be specialists in the same subject and if the bureaucrat is accepted in the party fold,their monopoly would end and their importance decline. A quiet campaign has begun to stall the bureaucrat’s entry into the party. Guess who the bureaucrat is.

In state’s good books?
Have no worry

During the Domariyaganj Assembly by-election,the Election Commission removed IPS officer Gyan Singh as the SP of Basti for reportedly playing host to ministers who went there for campaigning. He has now been appointed SP of Hardoi. Since Hardoi is close to Lucknow,it is regarded as a good post. Clearly,the government knows how to take care of its loyalists. In Domariyaganj,Gyan Singh proved his loyalty a second time. During the Lok Sabha election last year,the Election Commission had removed him as SP of Kushinagar.

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