The demise of Shashi Kapoor may have revived in Sonia Gandhi fond memories of her late husband. The first movie of Shashi Kapoor that Sonia watched was in 1966 — Shakespearewallah. “I think it was in 1966 in England. It was a memorable experience, not just for the beauty and grace of his acting, but because Rajiv took me to see it,” she recalled in her letter to the actor’s daughter Sanjna Kapoor. “Your father was a person of enormous charm and warmth that came straight from his heart,” the Congress president wrote.
No More Cards
The coming new year, railway employees will not be allowed to give greeting cards to one another. Presenting senior officers and visiting dignitaries with flower bouquets was banned three months ago on a directive from Railway Board chairman Ashwani Lohani. Officials said a simple SMS will suffice. Cards, if any, may be sent only by email.
External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj seems to be leaving no stone unturned to live up to her image as the minister with a large heart. Swaraj, who was praised by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for her effort in securing visas and those stranded in Islamic State-controlled territory, has now announced visa to a 63-year-old Pakistani national. With many from Pakistan approaching her ministry with requests for medical visas, she has directed all seeking such visas to submit documents with the Indian High Commission, giving hopes to them.
With the politics over Cyclone Ockhi putting Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan in the eye of storm, the Kerala state BJP unit did not want to miss the chance to gain from it. A delegation led by state BJP chief Kummanam Rajasekharan was in the national capital to meet the Home and Agriculture ministers to seek the Centre’s assistance. But Rajasekharan used the opportunity to reiterate that the Hyderabad-based Indian National Centre for Ocean Information Services had given the weather alert on November 28 and that CM Vijayan was lying. Now the BJP wants the Chief Minister to admit that he had failed to act. Earlier, Congress leader Ramesh Chennithala, during his visit to Delhi, alleged the government had failed to coordinate rescue operations.