Public accounts chairman K V Thomas made use of a meeting with a delegation from Ghana to seek more powers for PACs across the world. During a discussion with the delegation led by his Ghana counterpart, Thomas suggested that the reports given by the PAC to Parliament should be taken seriously by the executive and implemented. He also wanted the proceedings of the PAC to be made more transparent, by making them directly accessible to the general public.
Already known to be a media-savvy party, the BJP is going a few steps further. Within weeks, the four studios being constructed in the party headquarters will be completed and the party spokespersons and leaders will be available for television debates in these studios. Those who visit the party office, including party workers, will also get better canteen facilities in the new building.
A section in the railways ministry is unhappy over the seventh pay panel’s recommendation on abolition of various government allowances. The commission has recommended that the refreshment allowance for players and sporting staff be increased more than two times from the current Rs 240 per day which they get during matches. But it has also said that railway officials who accompany players as Railway Sports Promotion Board observers should not get this allowance.
Some staff of the Lalit Kala Akademi have been eagerly waiting for the seventh pay panel’s recommendations. Following the takeover of the Akademi by the government in April, these employees have found themselves on the wrong side of the culture ministry. Already in their 50s, they are considering early retirement after the commission’s recommendations on higher salaries are implemented.