After repeatedly supporting Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi over the last two days,Jammu and Kashmir chief minister Omar Abdullah also saw a place for the beleaguered Trinamool Congress leader in the history books. Long after other Railway Ministers are forgotten,Dinesh Trivedi will still be an answer to a General Knowledge or entrance test question, Abdullah tweeted. And just in case the import of his message was not evident to some,he tweeted again. And Derek (OBrien,the quiz master who is Trivedis colleague in Trinamool Congress) will probably be the one asking,can you name the only railway minister in history to lose his job hours after…
Filling the Gaps
Appointments to two keenly-awaited posts have been finalised by the government. Rajan Katoch,a 1979-batch IAS officer,has been named to head the Enforcement Directorate. The office of the Drug Controller General of India,which had been lying vacant for nearly a month,is also getting a new incumbent. Dr G N Singh,secretary-cum-scientific director of Indian Pharmacopoeia Commission has been given that job,though only for three months or till a regular appointment is made.
In declaring martyrdom for himself,Railway Minister Dinesh Trivedi was careful in the selection of heroes he was invoking. During his press conference and while answering queries on English television channels,he repeatedly compared his situation to the sacrifice of Bhagat Singh. But when he made an appearance on a Bangla television channel,he quickly replaced Bhagat Singh with Khudiram Bose,the legendary Bengali revolutionary who was hanged by the British in 1908.
While Congress chief Sonia Gandhi continues to repose faith in Ghulam Nabi Azads ability as a trouble-shooter,bad luck seems to be following him. When Jaganmohan Reddy was flexing his muscles in Andhra Pradesh,Azad was asked to mediate. Subsequently,Azad was also made the party general secretary in charge of Andhra. Over the last two years,however,the party is going from bad to worse in the state. More recently,Azad was involved in the government-formation exercise in Uttarakhand. The party has been left embarrassed with Harish Rawat launching a rebellion.
In politics,little decisions are often indicators of great significance. One such decision by the Samajwadi Party has got the Congress quite interested. Akhilesh Yadav has not included any of his party MLAs from Amethi or Rae Bareli districts in his Cabinet. Despite having won seven out of the 10 Assembly seats from these two parliamentary constituencies that are represented by Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi,the SP has not rewarded the MLAs who broke into the Congress stronghold. And the Congress is seeing this as a conciliatory and positive gesture from a party whose support is vital for the UPA government.