Friday, Oct 31, 2014

Inside track: Chinese check

Chinese President Xi Jinping (source: AP) Chinese President Xi Jinping (source: AP)
Written by Coomi Kapoor | Posted: June 29, 2014 12:35 am

The Japanese government is upset with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s decision to postpone his visit to Japan. It was expected to be Modi’s first major official meeting with a foreign head of government since taking office. The Japanese, incidentally, learnt of the postponement from the Indian media. The official reason for re-scheduling the PM’s trip is that Modi would not have been able to make any  substantial policy offers just days before the Budget. However, the Japanese suspect the hand of China behind the postponed visit, since Chinese President Xi Jinping is scheduled to meet Modi at the BRICS summit in Brazil on July 15-16. The Japanese are not the only ones upset by the PM’s changed plans. The RSS also noted with concern that the Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi took a full hour with the PM rather than the customary 15 minutes during his recent visit to the capital. They fears the PM is too enamoured of China, whom the Sangh views with great suspicion.

Sip of water
The CBI probe into the death of Maharashtra leader Gopinath Munde is likely to reveal that it was a sip of water, given to Munde at his own request, after the accident on Prithviraj Road, which became the cause for his death. Due to the impact of the Tata Indica which slammed into the Maruti Swift in which he was travelling, Munde’s cervical vertebra suffered a fracture between C1 and C2 vertebrae. It is at this joint at the base of the skull through which the vertebral artery, which supplies blood to the brain, passes. The artery was lacerated due to the spinal cord fracture. When Munde’s head was eased back so he could drink water, the neck, already in a fragile condition, snapped. At least this is what the AIIMS trauma centre believes caused his death.

Monkey menace
Now that he is the Finance Minister, it has become difficult for Arun Jaitley to take his daily walks in Lodhi Gardens. On his walk, he is accosted by all manner of favour-seekers who have requests for jobs, transfers and postings. The minister who is to move into 2, Krishna Menon Marg, may shift his morning walk to the spacious confines of the Lutyens bungalow that has been allotted to him. The compound has a special walking track built by its previous occupant, Sushil Kumar Shinde. Incidentally, the road is notorious for monkeys, which create a major nuisance in the area. This is reportedly the reason why former solicitor general Mohan Parasaran didn’t move into the house earmarked for solicitor generals on the same road. The new Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar is now in a dilemma on whether to move into his official quarters.

Forgotten territory
West Asian envoys are a tad miffed since President Pranab Mukherjee’s address to the joint session of Parliament failed to make any reference to India’s relations with countries in continued…

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