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Tuesday, January 19, 2021

Delhi Confidential: Protocol Matters

AS PRIME Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone for the new Parliament building on Thursday, questions were raised on the absence of the President and the Vice-President, who is also Chairman of the Rajya Sabha, at the function.

New Delhi | Updated: December 11, 2020 6:01:01 am
delhi confidential, narendra modi, new parliament building, harsh vardhan, covid-19, delhi news, indian express newsPrime Minister Narendra Modi.

AS PRIME Minister Narendra Modi laid the foundation stone for the new Parliament building on Thursday, questions were raised on the absence of the President and the Vice-President, who is also Chairman of the Rajya Sabha, at the function. The Lok Sabha Secretariat, however, had the answers ready. Anticipating such questions, they had dug out details of foundation stone-laying ceremonies of Parliament’s library building and Parliament Annexe in the past. They pointed out that the President was not present when Prime Minister Indira Gandhi laid the foundation stone for the Annexe or when Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi laid the foundation stone for the library building. And since the Prime Minister was performing the ceremony, the Vice-President, who is ahead of him in the order of precedence, cannot be present.

Covid Talks

HEALTH MINISTER Dr Harsh Vardhan, who is also the chair of WHO’s executive board, regularly holds virtual meetings with members of the apex health body on the pandemic. On Thursday evening, Vardhan had an engagement with another important global organisation – the World Bank. The minister participated in the World Bank Ministerial Round Table Discussion on vaccinating South Asia against Covid-19. The central focus of his presentation was on the unique digital infrastructure developed by India that has been designed to track the multiple vaccines as well as crores of beneficiaries likely to be vaccinated early next year.

Slow Motion

DELAYED APPOINTMENTS to the post of Vice-Chancellor (V-C) at central universities continue under the Narendra Modi-led government even in its second term. The term of the Haryana Central University V-C, R C Kuhad, ended in April this year. However, he is still working at the varsity as its acting head as the Ministry of Education is yet to appoint his successor. What makes the delay even more glaring is that not only has Kuhad completed his term at HCU, he has also, in the interim, retired from service at his parent university, that is Delhi University.

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