Some of the BJP MLAs from Karnataka who were sequestered at a resort in Gurgaon, near Delhi, have returned home as chances of the fall of the JD(S)-Congress government in Karnataka became bleak. The entire development seems to have left former CM and senior party leader B S Yeddyurappa more disappointed than anyone else. Yeddyurappa, it is learnt, tried to get an appointment with party president Amit Shah with his contingent of MLAs, who were asked to stay back after the BJP national convention in Delhi. All he could manage was an individual meeting with Shah. The party’s central leadership was of the view that they will not interfere until Yeddyurappa had adequate numbers to form a government in the state.
Locked in a prestige battle in Jind by-elections, the Congress and its high-profile candidate Randeep Singh Surjewala got a bit of a relief after the party managed to win over Jai Parkash, local Jat strongman and Independent MLA from Kalayat, better knows as JP. Congress party treasurer Ahmed Patel today met Parkash and managed to extract a promise from him to support Surjewala, and also campaign for him. The exact deal is not known, as Parkash later said he would not join the Congress. The MLA had sought Congress ticket for his son Vikas Saharan but the party did not oblige.
At an in-house seminar to discuss transformation prospects of the Railways, organised by the Centre for Transport Research and Management, several speakers, typically retired Railways bigwigs and external experts, spoke on many things that are wrong with Indian Railways and painted a grim picture. End of the day, it fell upon Railway Board Member-Traffic Girish Pillai to infuse some positivity about the Railways’ future. At the valedictory function, Pillai said demand for transport by trains is limitless even now, and that the Railways will end the year carrying more freight than before. He also said the new Rajdhani Express to Mumbai, to be flagged off on Saturday, was already full with a waiting list. Going by all indicators, he said, Indian Railways is looking at a bright future.