After a gap of eight years,CPM general secretary Prakash Karat will be in China again later this week. Karat will lead CPMs first delegation to China after the leadership change in the Communist country. The visit comes at time when China is no longer the ideal state for the Communists in India who have been increasingly looking at the Leftists in Latin America. The CPM is now also talking about the need for Left-leaning parties in India develop their own model of socialism and not look at other countries for inspiration. In fact,at its last party congress,the CPM had picked holes in the Chinese model of Socialism,talking about the growing inequalities and increasing levels of corruption in that country. During his visit,Karat is expected to call on some of the senior-most figures of the Chinese Communist Party.
UPSC Secretary A Bhattacharyya has written to the Railway Ministry reminding the national transporter that as per the warrant of precedence,chairman and members of the UPSC enjoy the same rank and pay as Supreme Court judges,Chief Election Commissioner and other election commissioners,and the CAG. And that the chairman and members need to travel to various parts of the country in discharge of their duties. The bottomline,subtly put in the letter,is that when these high-ranking officials book wait-listed train tickets,their tickets should be confirmed on a priority basis.
SCIENTISTS working in government departments already enjoy two years additional service compared to other employees. Now they can hope for a more elongated career. The government has set up a four-member screening committee to consider proposals for extension in service of specialists in scientific and medical fields beyond the existing 62 years to 64 years. The committee has been given two years to make its decisions.
FOR a year now,Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh has been telling people that he would prefer to move to a party position to work for the upcoming elections. However,when the time came for making the shift,it was Ajay Maken and C P Joshi who took the plunge while Ramesh has been conspicuously silent. Congress insiders say that while Ramesh has been enthusiastically proclaiming his love for party work,he has never openly expressed any such desire at party forums or before the top leadership of the Congress.
BOLT FROM THE PAST
AS Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar forced a split between the JD(U) and the BJP over Narendra Modis rising pre-eminence,a copy of his 2003 speech,when he was the Railway Minister,quietly found its way into circulation over the weekend. The speech was delivered at the inauguration of a railways project in Kutch on December 13,2003,with Modi present on the stage. At that time,Kumar had lamented that a different image of Modi is projected outside Gujarat despite his good work in the state. He had described the 2002 riots as a blot on the nation,but said it should not overshadow the development work being done by Modi. As Kumar tries to woo the Muslim vote-bank by opposing Modis rise in the BJP,the speech copy is likely to become more visible.