DURING THE joint election rally of the SP, BSP and RLD in Firozabad on Saturday, BSP chief Mayawati got upset with continuous sloganeering by the crowd — of mostly SP workers — while she was addressing the gathering. She briefly stopped her speech to ask the slogan-shouting workers to learn from BSP supporters who quietly listen to her speech. Mayawati went on to say, “Mere khayal se Samajwadi Party ke logon ko bhi bahut kuch seekhne ki jaroorat hai abhi. (I think, people from the SP still have a lot to learn)”. The rally was organised in support of SP candidate and sitting MP Akshay Yadav. SP president Akhilesh Yadav and RLD chief Ajit Singh were also present on the stage along with Akshay’s father and senior SP leader Ram Gopal Yadav.
JAIDEEP SARKAR, who had served as then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s private secretary, has been appointed as India’s next High Commissioner to South Africa. Sarkar, a 1987-batch IFS officer, is currently serving as India’s Ambassador in Bhutan. Before his Bhutan assignment, Sarkar was India’s Ambassador to Israel from October 2012 to January 2016. In 2004, Sarkar joined the Prime Minister’s Office as a director and dealt with a number of ministries, including the Ministry of External Affairs, Finance and Planning. Later, he became Singh’s trusted aide and was by his side at all key moments of his Prime Ministerial stint.
MALDIVES PRESIDENT Ibrahim Mohamed Solih, a cricket buff, visited the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore for an IPL match between Royal Challengers Bangalore and Chennai Super Kings on Sunday. Solih, who was accompanied by his Foreign Minister Abdullah Shahid and Indian envoy to Maldives Sunjay Sudhir, also met captains M S Dhoni and Virat Kohli, who presented autographed jerseys of their respective teams to him.