WHO WILL hoist the Tricolour at the AICC headquarters on Independence Day? With Congress president Sonia Gandhi and former party president Rahul Gandhi both in isolation after testing positive for Covid, the grand old party was on Sunday grappling with this question. A K Antony, one of the senior members of the CWC, had hoisted the party flag on the occasion of the Congress foundation day in 2020 when Sonia did not turn up and Rahul was abroad. Antony is now away in Kerala. The senior-most member of the CWC is Ghulam Nabi Azad, a prominent member of the G 23 grouping. But will the Congress establishment invite Azad to do the honours? Leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha Mallikarjun Kharge is too down with Covid. So will Pawan Kumar Bansal, the AICC treasurer who is also in charge of party administration, or K C Venugopal, the general secretary in charge of organisation, hoist the flag. One leader merely said one of the seniors will hoist the flag.
EVEN AS Justice U U Lalit is set to be appointed the 49th Chief Justice of India this month, it is unlikely that he will move to the newly renovated swanky official residence-cum-secretariat for the CJI on 7, Krishna Menon Marg. While it could take some time for the outgoing CJI NV Ramana to vacate the premises and given that Justice Lalit has a short tenure of just 74 days, the view is that it would be more convenient to continue in the current bungalow on Akbar Road. The official CJI residence was expanded in August last year to include a permanent secretariat for the SC Collegium next to the CJI’s residence.
JAIRAM RAMESH, Congress general secretary (communications), shared former Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru’s handwritten draft of his famous first Independence Day speech in which he had written about the country’s “date with destiny” but delivered it as “tryst with destiny”. Ramesh said on Twitter, “75 years ago, a little after midnight, Nehru gave his immortal ‘Tryst with Destiny’ speech. Here’s his handwritten draft dated 14.8.47. He had penned it as ‘date with destiny’, but in a moment of true genius delivered it as ‘tryst with destiny’.” Nehru in his draft note wrote, “Long years ago we made a date with destiny, and now the time comes when we shall redeem our pledge, not wholly or in full measure, but very substantially. At the strike of the midnight hour, when the world sleeps, India will wake to life and freedom.”