Inviting Obama

In January next year,Mamata Banerjee’s government is planning a grand function related to the commemoration of the 150th birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda

Written by Express News Service | Published: August 29, 2012 12:06:27 am

In January next year,Mamata Banerjee’s government is planning a grand function related to the commemoration of the 150th birth anniversary of Swami Vivekananda. Mamata is understood to have had a word with US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton,when she visited Kolkata in May,that she would like to invite US President Barack Obama for the function. Mamata cited Obama’s links with Chicago where Vivekananda delivered his historic speech in 1893. According to a Trinamool Congress leader in Delhi,Mamata is keen on having Obama as a guest even if he does not remain the US President after the presidential election later this year. While nothing has been done officially yet,TMC sources say Mamata is interested in following up the matter soon by sending an invite.

Power Play

ON Tuesday,Mulayam Singh Yadav received feedback on the power situation in Uttar Pradesh,ruled by his party,from none other than the most powerful politician in the country. As they waited for the Lok Sabha to assemble for the day,UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi walked over to Mulayam’s seat and sat with him for a couple of minutes. She is learnt to have conveyed the burgeoning complaints from Rae Bareli,her constituency,about the increasingly long power cuts. Mulayam assured her of personally looking into the matter. Sonia was heard saying “Shukriya” before going back to her seat.

Qualification Change

IN a sudden development,the Public Enterprises Selection Board on Tuesday cancelled interviews for selection to the post of CMD Pawan Hans and announced a new date,October 4,for making fresh applications for the position. The original advertisement,issued on July 2,2012,said candidates should have technical/MBA qualification and experience in management. On Tuesday,however,the board issued a directive saying the candidate should have an engineering degree and or/management qualification from a reputed institution.


DIPLOMATIC channels were working overtime to schedule a meeting between Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari in Tehran on Thursday. The problem is that Zardari arrives in Tehran for the NAM Summit on Thursday itself at 7.30 pm while India has proposed the time of meeting at 5.30 pm. This has resulted in a scheduling issue,which officials hoped would be resolved one way or the other because Singh leaves for India early Friday morning.

Illustrious List

THE HRD Ministry is set to appoint chancellors for the new central universities and the shortlist comprises many famous names — from economist Y K Alagh,who has been selected for the Central University of Gujarat,to management consultant and Planning Commission member Arun Maira,chosen for the University of Himachal Pradesh. Economist Vijay Kelkar,sociologist Andre Beteille,educationist Madhav Menon,former foreign secretary Shyam Saran,Public Health Foundation of India president Dr K Srinath Reddy,and former NAC member V Krishnamurty are among the others who have been chosen to be chancellors of the new universities.

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