LAST MONTH, Congress’s chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala went on record to say that 99.9 per cent of the Congress leaders and workers want Rahul Gandhi to return as party chief. But the big question was whether Rahul himself was willing to come back. In the past two days, leaders considered close to him have told other party leaders privately that Rahul has finally relented and agreed to return as the Congress president. Some leaders wonder whether the political chatter that NCP chief Sharad Pawar should head the UPA is the reason for this new messaging as Rahul’s close aides had been insisting all along that he will return as party chief through a proper election in the first half of 2021.
BRITISH PRIME Minister Boris Johnson’s refusal to become the chief guest at the Republic Day celebrations came on a day when the UK announced its new High Commissioner. Deputy NSA Alex Ellis, who will assume charge this month, has been the British envoy to Brazil. Having been to India 35 years ago for the first time, he took to Twitter to says that he is fond of Mango lassi and cricket, and wants to brush up his Hindi.
JANUARY 5 is special to many politicians. At least five senior leaders across party lines celebrated their birthday on Tuesday. They are West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, senior Congress leader Anand Sharma, DMK leader Kanimozhi, BJP veteran Murli Manohar Joshi and former UP chief minister Kalyan Singh. Prime Minister Narendra Modi wished Singh over phone and tweeted his wishes to Joshi. Sharma was pleasantly surprised when he received a letter from the Prime Minister greeting him.
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