Picture not perfect
On the eve of Holi,many people turned up at the Samajwadi Party office to greet Mulayam Singh Yadav. The party office also released Netajis customary message,congratulating the people,but there was no photo accompanying it. It turned out that the pictures clicked by the SP photographer had Guddu Pandit,an MLA with a notorious record,or Ajeetmani Tripathi,younger brother of Amarmani Tripathi who is in jail for the murder of Madhumita Shukla,in every frame. The party office was,therefore,asked to release the message,but withhold the photo.
Congress leader Ammar Rizvi,who shares good relations with Mulayam Singh Yadav,has been allotted a palatial bungalow in the VIP area of Gautam Palli by the state government. The same bungalow was allotted to Rizvi earlier during the previous Mulayam regime,but Mayawati had got it vacated. Usually,bungalows in that area are given to ministers and senior IAS officials,but Rizvi is not even an MLA. In fact,he has not won any election since 1996. Naturally,Congress leaders are envious of Rizvi.
When former union minister Saleem Sherwani recently announced his decision to shift to Aonla,relinquishing his traditional Lok Sabha constituency of Budaun,it took Congressmen by surprise. Some termed it Sherwanis magnanimity to vacate the seat for a new face. But the picture became clear after a week when the BSP named Saeed Sherwani,who is Saleem Sherwanis brother,as its candidate for Budaun.
State BJP general secretary Pankaj Singh,who is son of party president Rajnath Singh,has been very active lately. On March 10,he was stopped by the police in Sultanpur when on way to Ambedkar Nagar to meet the family of slain Hindu Yuva Vahini leader Ram Babu Gupta. Later,he headed a team,constituted by state president Laxmikant Bajpai,to visit Etawah where a Brahmin family was allegedly humiliated for giving shelter to an eloped couple. Recently,Pankaj Singh also addressed a press conference with Bajpai. In his past terms as party secretary and general secretary,Pankaj had faced the charge that he was inactive. This time,Pankaj obviously does not want to give his critics a handle that he holds the position merely because of his father.
Keeping conflicts at bay
BJP president Laxmikant Bajpai has nominated associates of senior leaders as district presidents. Ashok Monga,a favourite of Rajnath Singh,has been named president of Ghaziabad Mahanagar,which is part of Singhs Lok Sabha constituency. Similarly,Janardan Tiwari,representative of Gorakhpur MP Yogi Adityanath,has been named president of Gorakhpur district. Ashok Rana,who has been nominated president of Agra district,is close to former chief minister Kalyan Singh. When party workers in these districts questioned Bajpai,he reportedly told them that he does not want a conflict with the senior leaders.
In the recent budget session,BJP leader Hukum Singh mentioned how some station officers in his home district Muzaffarnagar indulged in name dropping. They act as if they know senior SP leaders. On the phone,they pretend to be talking to Professor Sahib (Ramgopal Yadav), Hukum Singh said. His statement left SP leaders red-faced. After the session,three Yadav SOs in the town were removed and sent to the police lines.
Mela is on!
The Kumbh Mela in Allahabad got over 20 days back,but IPS officer RKS Rathore is still holding the post of SSP,Kumbh Mela. While four other IPS officers who were posted as SPs in Kumbh Mela were given new postings last week,Rathore has,for some reason,not yet caught the eye of the government.