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Saturday, December 04, 2021

Delhi Confidential: Picking candidates

Congress is set to begin discussions on selection of candidates for the forthcoming Assembly elections much in advance. And the focus is Uttar Pradesh.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi |
October 23, 2021 7:22:19 am
Sonia Gandhi

In a departure from practice, Congress is set to begin discussions on selection of candidates for the forthcoming Assembly elections much in advance. And the focus is Uttar Pradesh. A meeting of the Central Election Committee – the panel headed by Sonia Gandhi that finalises the candidates – will take place on Saturday to discuss candidate selection for the state. Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, the AICC general secretary in charge of Uttar Pradesh, earlier this week announced that 40 per cent of the party’s candidates will be women. The party could send a message showing its seriousness by announcing the first list of candidates, with many women in it, soon.

Hindi boost

A review has found that the use of Hindi has seen a marked jump in the Rajya Sabha Secretariat between 2019 and 2020. According to the review by Rajya Sabha Secretary General P P K Ramacharyulu on Thursday, replies in Hindi to applications and representations by the secretariat increased three times while replies in Hindi to communications received in Hindi has doubled. Issue of tender notices in Hindi went up by over a third as well. Sources said a secretariat veteran observed that this increased use of Hindi is significant, given that both Chairman M Venkaiah Naidu and the Joint Secretary responsible for promotion of Hindi, are from non-Hindi speaking states. Naidu has been emphasising on use of Indian languages by MPs in the proceedings of the House and of Hindi in official work.

Making space

Shastri Bhawan, which houses several ministries and departments, is perpetually being redone, with the building facing a severe space crunch. Every time there is an expansion or reshuffle of ministerial portfolios, the pace of renovation picks up. Currently, work is underway to carve out an office space for newly inducted Minister of State for Education Rajkumar Ranjan Singh. On Friday, around 8 pm, there was a flutter as a wall mounted fan caught fire on the third floor of the building. The Delhi Fire Services brought the situation under control within minutes.

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