With many Union ministers voicing their desire to quit the government and serve the Congress ahead of elections, it has only drawn sarcasm and derision from their party colleagues. With only a few months to go for polls, not many leaders are impressed by these ministers’ projected attempt to shun power as poison after enjoying it all these years. A senior Congress functionary pointed out that none of these ministers conveyed such desire to the party high command ahead of any Cabinet reshuffle in the past.
AROUND 20 senior journalists, who are occupying government flats in Lutyens Delhi, have petitioned to the Urban Development and the Information and Broadcasting ministries to extend their stay in the premises. Many of them have been occupying these houses for over a decade. The UD Ministry is, however, not inclined to oblige them as these accommodations are meant for young budding journalists from modest background who come to the city to make a career. These journalists had earlier petitioned to former I&B minister Ambika Soni and are back to lobbying again.
THE CRISIS MAN
INDIA’S new Ambassador to the United States S Jaishankar appears to be the go-to man for the Ministry of External Affairs. As India’s Ambassador to China, he managed to end the Depsang intrusion by the Chinese. Then, just a week before his reaching Washington, the Devyani Khobragade case made the headlines. Having managed a way out of it by striking a diplomatic deal with the US given the tough stance taken by the legal side, Jaishankar is fast earning the reputation of being the MEA’s man to handle any crisis.
THE annual conference of state minority commissions, organised by the National Commission for Minorities, is usually held in March. Keen to organise one more conference before his term comes to an end next month, NCM Chairman Wajahat Habibullah, however, advanced the annual affair and decided to hold a two-day national meet this week to be inaugurated by the Prime Minister. The topic — Assessing the Impact of PM’s 15 Point Programme’ for Minorities. But many Muslim leaders brought to the commission’s notice that Milad un-Nabi, the Prophet’s birthday, is on January 14 after which the NCM had to curtail its meet to a day on Monday.