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Delhi confidential: All ears

Smriti Irani, who heads the board, could attend only the last 10 minutes of the meeting owing to her commitments in Rajya Sabha.

By: Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: December 11, 2014 1:36:48 am

There was no whip but almost all Trinamool Congress members in Lok Sabha made it a point to attend the House on Wednesday afternoon, given that party chief Mamata Banerjee’s nephew Abhishek Banerjee — the MP from Diamond Harbour — was set to deliver his maiden speech on MGNREGA. But in an anti-climax, Abhishek did not get to speak as the matter was not taken up.

Closed chapter

Amid a controversy over its decision to replace German with Sanskrit as the third language, the Board of Governors of the Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan met on Wednesday to take stock of some routine matters, such as clearing its annual accounts and annual report. This was the first board meeting since the one on October 27, when the  controversial decision was taken. Interestingly, the contentious issue did not come up for discussion, except that the board was informed that an inquiry committee had been set up to look into how the MoU between KVS and the Goethe-Institut/Max Mueller Bhavan — which violates the Constitution as per the HRD Ministry — was signed. HRD Minister Smriti Irani, who heads the board, could attend only the last 10 minutes of the meeting owing to her commitments in Rajya Sabha.

Germany bound

Prime Minister Narendra Modi, who met German Chancellor Angela Merkel on the sidelines of G-20 summit last month in Australia, is learnt to have made up his mind to visit Germany next year. His office is learnt to have confirmed his participation at the Hannover Messe 2015 — the world’s largest industrial trade fair — in which India will take centrestage as the official partner country. Modi will inaugurate the fair alongside Merkel.

Wait for justice

Ever since Justice H L Dattu took over as the Chief Justice of India, the practice of making oral requests before the CJI for listing urgent matters has been revived. Around 10.30 am, lawyers can be seen queuing up in Court No. 1 of the CJI to orally mention their cases. On Wednesday, senior advocate Anil Divan made a request to CJI Dattu to fix a date to hear a case, which had been deleted from the list nine times. The CJI allowed his request. Next in the queue was Divan’s son Shyam Divan, also a senior advocate, who wanted to make a similar plea for one of his cases. “Wait. It cannot be son after the father. We will hear you after a gap,” Justice Dattu said in a lighter vein. While the lawyers were in splits, the CJI actually heard Shyam only after another lawyer was done with his issue.

Straight talk

Rahul Gandhi’s democratisation exercise in the Youth Congress has often been criticised by party elders. Recently, Ramesh Chennithala, Kerala’s Home Minister and a former Youth Congress president, told Rahul that the youth wing should not be run like an NGO. The occasion was the Youth Congress alumni meet and Rahul was on the dais. Chennithala said he had not come to praise Rahul as that would be of no help. It is learnt Chennithala said that the Youth Congress should be run like a political organisation and told Rahul that he cannot use the same yardstick for performers and non-performers, who ought to be removed. Chennithala also told Rahul that he should monitor those who have been given organisational responsibilities.

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