Grappling with a spate of accidents of late, the Indian Railways, under minister Suresh Prabhu, has been forced to act stern with its erring staff. In the past year or so, the railways has sacked 97 officials for negligence in duty at various levels. Further, several Divisional Railway Managers (DRMs) — officials key to running train operations at the division level — have also been removed from their posts after failing to prevent accidents. Removing DRMs from their posts, the ministry says, effectively cuts short the careers of these officials. Rail Bhavan is now hoping that these measures make officials pull up their socks and improve the railways’s safety record.
An application to the Election Commission of India for registration of a new party called the Nationalist Trinamool Congress headquartered in Cooch Behar has caused speculation about the people behind it, possibly disgruntled leaders in Mamata Banerjee’s party. The timing of the application — just months away from the West Bengal assembly elections — is bound to cause discomfort in Trinamool ranks.
The change of guard in Australia had an unlikely impact on the top-level India-Australia intelligence dialogue. When Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott was ousted by his party colleague Malcolm Turnbull last week, a delegation from a top agency of that country, the Office of National Assessment, was in town. But the head of the agency could not come to India since he had to brief the newly appointed Australian Prime Minister. As a result, the dialogue between the two sides could not take place, although some delegation members had already reached Delhi.
Writing On The Wall
Israeli Ambassador Daniel Carmon, who went to Hauz Khas village over the weekend, was quite amused by an interesting message written on one of the walls. It said parking is allowed only for the villagers, and anybody else parking their cars in that area will have their tyres deflated. He could not stop himself from taking a picture of the message, and showing it to friends and colleagues.