With two days to go for the Prime Minister-headed high-level committee’s scheduled meeting on Thursday to select the new CBI director, the government is yet to circulate the names short-listed for the post to the committee members. This, despite the fact that Mallikarjun Kharge, the Congress leader in Lok Sabha and Opposition member in the panel, had written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi a few days ago demanding that the panel of names be made available to him at least three days before the meeting. Kharge had earlier written another letter to the Prime Minister in which he had called the appointment of M Nageswara Rao as interim director of CBI illegal.
Auction Before Action
Next week, the National Gallery of Modern Art will host an auction of gifts presented to Prime Minister Narendra Modi from across India. Shawls, pagris, jackets, sculptures, and traditional musical instruments will all be auctioned — first physically and then through an e-auction. Proceeds from the auction will go towards the Namami Gange project for cleaning the Ganga. At present, 1,900 gifts received by the Prime Minister are on display at the NGMA.
Kill Bill Call
The breakneck speed with which the Union government has passed and implemented the EWS quota Bill — for 10 per cent reservation for the economically weaker sections among General Category — is set to face some opposition. Dalit rights groups across the country are in the process of mobilising support for a nation-wide ‘Burn the Bill’ movement on January 31. Several groups have already backed the idea of holding peaceful protests on the scale of the agitation seen on April 2, 2018, in the wake of the changes made in the Prevention of SC/ST Atrocities Act.
The new ordinance for the board of governors (BoG) of the Medical Council of India has scope for expanding the BoG, which is now the highest decision-making body for medical education, from a seven-member to a 12-member body. Recommendations for new appointments have already been sent to the Union Home Ministry. Headed by Niti Aayog member Dr Vinod Paul, it has among its members the directors of AIIMS-Delhi and PGIMER-Chandigarh. The ordinance had to be re-issued after the amended Bill failed to be passed by Rajya Sabha.