Earlier this week, Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad had hit out at Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan over the state Assembly passing a resolution demanding scrapping of Citizenship Amendment Act — Prasad had asked Vijayan to seek legal advice. On Friday, Prasad made a much calmer reply to Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh’s open letter criticising the Union minister’s remarks on passage of the resolution in Kerala Assembly. He tweeted: “Dear @capt_amarinder Ji U r a senior, seasoned & informed leader who fought for India as an Army officer earlier. Both center and states have to work together to keep India safe & secure & also give shelter to those persecuted for their faith. This is the glorious tradition of India.”
After Lokpal chairman, retired judge Pinaki Chandra Ghosh, and eight members were appointed in March last year, the DoPT had provided them vehicles on rent. Inspection of files in DoPT reveals that Justice Ghosh was provided a Toyota Camry and the members Toyota Altis cars – on daily rent of Rs 5,700 and Rs 3,200, respectively. Now the budget of Lokpal has been transferred to it and the Lokpal secretariat has bought one Skoda, eight Altis and two Ciaz cars – respectively for its chairman, members, and senior officers. The Lokpal secretariat says Rs 3.85 crore has been paid as rent for the space occupied at Hotel Ashok since March 22 up to October 31 last year. The office of Lokpal will soon be shifted to a new office in Vasant Kunj.
All BJP leaders, including Union ministers, actively participate in party programmes and campaigns, and there had been no exemption for its national president, Amit Shah, even after he became the Union Home Minister. But the party’s latest list of leaders to carry out door-to-door campaign for the CAA has some names missing. External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar had become a BJP member after he took oath as minister, but his name is not among the 42 leaders assigned the task, which include Shah and Defence Minister Rajnath Singh. Among other names missing are those of Union ministers Harsh Vardhan and Hardeep Singh Puri, although party leaders maintain that more names could be added to this “first list”.