BEING A cricket icon has its advantages in this country. Nominated Rajya Sabha MP Sachin Tendulkar, known more for his poor attendance record in the House than his interventions, did not attend any of the 12 meetings of the Standing Committee on Information Technology held last year. Despite this, he has been re-nominated to the committee. True to form, he did not attend the first meeting of the reconstituted committee.
THE Congress’s Uttar Pradesh unit chief Raj Babbar is down with fever. Babbar had to return to Delhi on Wednesday due to high fever, leaving the yatra that he was leading. Fortunately for Babbar and the Congress, test reports found it was viral fever and not chikungunya, which would have kept him out of action for a long time. Babbar, Congress’s CM face Sheila Dikshit and Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi are leading three separate yatras in the state. Rahul too is taking a break on Thursday, as he is travelling to Assam to appear in a court in a defamation case.
HOME MINISTER Rajnath Singh visited senior JD(U) leader Sharad Yadav at his residence on Wednesday. While the stated purpose of the visit was to follow up on the decision to make Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar a member of a committee chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi to commemorate the birth centenary of Jan Sangh ideologue Pandit Deendayal Upadhyay, recent political developments in Bihar led to speculation that the visit was more than that. Adding grist to the rumour mill was the observation by a senior JD(U) leader from Bihar that there are no permanent enemies or friends in politics and “politics is a game of possibilities”.
ON WEDNESDAY afternoon, Union Culture Minister Mahesh Sharma held a meeting with many Padma and Sangeet Natak Akademi awardees to seek their suggestions on how to “promote and preserve Indian culture”. One of the proposals made on the occasion was to formulate a National Cultural Policy, so as to undertake all cultural activities in a unidirectional and cohesive manner. There was also a proposal to
include culture and nationalism as part of primary school curriculum.