With the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) planning to ratchet up Hindutva issues in the run-up to the Lok Sabha elections,there was some relief for BJPs well-known Muslim faces Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi and Shahnawaz Hussain. Addressing a press conference over Muzaffarnagar violence,VHP patron Ashok Singhal Wednesday blamed an alleged love jihad by Muslims as the underlying reason for the communal tension. Singhal was forced to take a stand on the issue of love when asked whether Naqvi and Hussain,both of whom are married to Hindus,fall in the category of love jihadis. The VHP clarified that there was difference between love and love jihad.
CRACKS IN I&B
PRASAR Bharati CEO Jawahar Sircar is not happy with the use of the public broadcaster in transmitting a slew of programmes that are essentially paeans to the UPA government. The issue is learnt to have driven a wedge between him and Information & Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari. Sircar was also said to be upset by the fact that he was made to attend the launch of the Bharat Nirman website Monday,although he did not want to associate himself with blatant government propaganda.
CALL OF FAITH
PREPARATIONS are afoot for President Pranab Mukherjees visit to Belgium and Turkey in October. As advance teams were sent to these countries for preparations for the visit,they were informally conveyed that the dates should not spill over beyond October 10. The reason: Mukherjee has to keep his date with the Durga Puja in his ancestral village Mirati,which starts from October 10. There are quite a few tales about Mukherjees devotion to the deity. When he was the Defence Minister,then US defence secretary Donald Rumsfeld had called him up but had to wait until Mukherjee performed puja in his ancestral village. Officials involved in finalising the Presidents visit this time are,therefore,quite clear about their priority.
OF ETHICS AND WORK
THAT Union Home Secretary Anil Goswami reports to work early and continues till late in the night is a known fact. But his subordinates do not seem to be equally committed to their call of duty. On Wednesday,Goswami pointed out that his officers at the North Block do not adhere to the work regime that he follows. While appreciating the administration of Jammu and Kashmir during an event,Goswami remarked that it is difficult to find officers past 6 pm. Goswami,a seasoned officer from J&K cadre,also said people from J&K excel in every field as they do not go home unless they have finished the tasks assigned to them.
IIT Jodhpur has not only been mentored by IIT Kanpur but it also continues to be led by those from that IIT. Prof Prem Kalra from IIT Kanpur,the first Director of IIT Jodhpur,is set to hand over the baton to Prof B S Murthy,who has spent several years teaching at IIT Kanpur before moving to IIT Madras. Prof Kalra,who is quitting before his term at IIT Jodhpur ends,will return to his alma mater the Radhasaomi sects Agra-based Dayalbagh Educational Institute.