A quarantine notice pasted outside former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s 3, Motilal Nehru Place residence has evoked the curiosity of some Congress leaders. It turns out that the daughter of a domestic help who works at Singh’s residence has tested positive. She and her family, who live in the servant quarters, have been quarantined. Singh, who has not been keeping well for some time, is slowly getting active. Congress leaders said the former Prime Minister attended a meeting of the party’s consultative committee on Thursday through video conference.
Acceding to the government’s request, Attorney General of India K K Venugopal is set to continue to hold office for another year. The government was keen to retain the veteran lawyer for a full tenure of three years but, sources indicated, Venugopal expressed concerns citing his age. He turns 90 next year. His initial three-year tenure is due to end on June 30. As the top law officer of the country, Venugopal is leading the government’s case in key constitutional matters before the Supreme Court including the challenges against scrapping of Article 370 and the Citizenship Amendment Act.
As the Rajya Sabha secretariat decided to assess multiple train bookings by MPs that ran up big bills, the details were shocking. A former MP made 63 bookings on 23 days in January last year, costing a sum of Rs 1,69,005. The member confirmed he had travelled by train on only seven occasions against a fare of Rs 22,085. But, as per the bill, the Rajya Sabha paid Rs 1,46,920 extra — mainly because cancellation didn’t take place. Another sitting MP’s actual travel was only 15 per cent of the total claim of Railways. For this year, Railways has sought a payment of Rs 7.8 crore, which is just the one third of the bill given to Parliament. In order to prevent members from doing multiple booking and not travelling, RS members are asked to cancel bookings in time, failing which recovery will be made from them. Railways has agreed to change the software to enable identification of booking by MPs from both Houses separately, sources said.
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