While there was much political attention on Congress leader Rahul Gandhi’s remarks on the Maha Vikas Aghadi government in Maharashtra, the silence by another leader has not escaped the attention of the political class. Former Maharashtra chief minister and senior BJP leader Devendra Fadnavis on Tuesday reeled out figures of the financial aid given by the Centre to the state, and accused the state government of not utilising the money. But there was no immediate retort by state Finance Minister Ajit Pawar, surprising Congress leaders. Many of them are now wondering whether to read any political meaning into Ajit Pawar’s silence given his political manoeuvrings only six months ago.
Masks On Track
Vice President M Venkaiah Naidu’s office is learnt to have requisitioned washable masks from the Railways, and have been supplied some 1,000 masks and informally informed that more can be given, if needed. Not just Naidu, the masks, made at coaching workshops in Northern Railways, are being used by all top bosses in the Railways, including minister Piyush Goyal.
Friend In Need
The BJP, which is in a bitter battle with the ruling Trinamool Congress in West Bengal, does not leave any opportunity to show that its leaders are more connected with the people of the state. On Monday, when domestic flight services resumed after nearly two months, many arrived in Delhi to catch flights to their respective states. However, confusion over protocols meant many flights were cancelled at the last moment. Students belonging to West Bengal, Tripura, Assam and Nagaland from a private university in Punjab got stranded in Delhi after flights to their states got cancelled. When the university sought help, representatives from these states intervened and got them accommodated in respective state bhavans. With those from West Bengal reportedly not receiving any help, the students, including a few girls, were on their way back to Punjab when someone contacted BJP leader Shivprakash. Shivprakash, the party’s Bengal in-charge, immediately intervened. As the bus reached Sonipat in Haryana, he made arrangements for the students there.
Periasamy Kumaran, who is presently Ambassador of India to Qatar and was present at the US-Taliban signing ceremony in Doha in February, is now headed to Singapore as the Indian High Commissioner. Kumaran, a 1992-batch IFS officer, will replace Jawed Ashraf, who is headed to France as Indian ambassador. Ashraf was in the PMO earlier.