FOOD FOR THOUGHT
As Amritsar went to polls Wednesday, BJP candidate Arun Jaitley wrote his daily ‘campaign diary’. But this time he did not dwell on the usual political issues. Rather he chose to write on the culinary delights of the city. Jaitley made special mention of the ‘Amritsari Kulcha-Chana’ and strongly recommended the ‘poori-chhole’ from Kanhaiya Halwai, although he pointed out that it should be had occasionally because of its high caloric value. Others to find mention in his diary were the Amritsari Lassi from Ahuja’s and Gyan’s. For non-vegetarian fare, it was ‘Surjit’ all the way, the senior BJP leader recommended. He also made a special mention of the Giani tea stall that served as the alternative to his daily Lodhi Garden tea. Holding out a promise for these eateries, Jaitley finally said he could foresee a situation where some of these will acquire a brand value across the country.
With just about a fortnight left for the poll results, Union Ministry of Commerce is pushing for 1995-batch IAS officer Ashish Kundra’s posting at the Indian High Commission in London as Minister (Economic). Kundra is currently private secretary to Commerce Minister Anand Sharma. Incidentally, applications had earlier been invited for the post and even before the last date of application, powers that be swung into action approaching the Prime Minister’s Office for Kundra’s posting.
The National Commission for Minorities recently wrote to the Ministry of Home Affairs, asking for inclusion of the Bhoti language spoken largely by Buddhists in Tibet and some other parts of India in the Eighth Schedule. The reply from the ministry has caused some consternation as it has said that this along with similar demands from 32 other languages is pending with a committee formed in 2003.
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Continuing with what has become a trend not to appoint heads of central armed police forces in time, the government has given additional charge of Sashastra Seema Bal (SSB) to DG, CISF, Arvind Ranjan. DG, SSB, Arun Chowdhury retired Wednesday but the government did not name his successor. Chowdhury, who demitted office a day before his birthday, also handled the Kashmir desk of the Intelligence Bureau when the state was going through a bad phase of militancy in the 90s.