THE Congress-RJD-JD(U) alliance experiment may have clicked in Bihar in the recent Assembly bypolls, but if indications from the Congress are anything to go by then the party would not prefer to continue its association with Lalu Prasad. Although Assembly election in Bihar is a year away, those in the know said vice-president Rahul Gandhi was not keen to continue the experiment and will prefer an alliance with the JD(U).
As it is, they say the chief ministerial ambitions of Lalu and Nitish Kumar could clash and the Congress will have to choose one of them. For the time being, however, the Congress is unlikely to end its tie-up with the RJD and the JD(U) in Jharkhand where it is hoping to rope in the JMM to forge a grand alliance against the BJP.
AS the retirement day of Director Intelligence Bureau (DIB) chief Syed Asif Ibrahim nears, the NDA government like its predecessor seems to be in a mood to elevate someone from the agency itself to the rank. The current DIB retires in November. The government is unlikely to appoint an outsider to the post.
AFTER taking over the charge of Financial Commissioner in Railway Board last week, Rajalakshmi Ravikumar seems to have hit the ground running. She has cut short her daily appointments list to clear backlog of files. Having joined at a time when the preparation for next year’s budget is about to start and stock-taking for last budget’s finances are on, Ravikumar is learnt to have shunned weekend offs for herself, deciding to devote time to office instead, bringing a semblance of activity in the all-important Finance Directorate which had been without a full-time head for the past five months.
THE Ministry of External Affairs is in panic over Ebola scare, so much so that it cancelled the showpiece event of India Africa Forum Summit scheduled for December this year. While this was a consequence of India’s ill-preparedness to tackle the deadly epidemic, one of the unintended consequences is the fate of an official who was posted as Joint Secretary (India Africa Forum Summit). The official, Santosh Jha, who has earlier served in Colombo and New York, is now waiting for his next assignment. It is ironic that he as Joint Secretary (administration) was in charge of postings and transfers in the MEA.