The last At Home function by Air Chief N A K Browne,who retires this December,turned out to be a tame affair with quite a few notable absentees. While the President,PM and Sonia Gandhi were present,there was very little attendance from political circles with only two ministers showing up MoS Defence Jitendra Singh and his predecessor M M Pallam Raju. Even within the armed forces,there were absentees with Army Chief General Bikram Singh keeping away due to a prior commitment.
Top officers in the CBI are busy these days compiling a progress report on some of the key cases involving BJP leaders,including Gujarat CM Narendra Modi. The report has been sought by the Prime Ministers Office apparently to prepare a reply to Leader of Opposition Arun Jaitleys charges. Jaitley has recently written to the Prime Minister highlighting cases like the Sohrabuddin encounter,Ishrat Jehan encounter and Dara Singh encounter and the way the investigations have been done in these cases by CBI. Jaitley has also accused the NIA of working at the behest of the Congress to involve right-wing activists in some terror cases.
Railway Minister Mallikarjun Kharge has granted one more extension to Neelam Katara,mother of Nitish Katara who was allegedly murdered by the son of UP strongman D P Yadav,to retain the government accommodation in Delhi. The house was allotted to Kataras now deceased husband Nishit,a senior Railway bureaucrat. Katara has been pleading with Railways to allow her to retain the house,citing inconvenience and security concerns. A section of Railways had been opposing repeated extensions,pointing out that the trial in the case is over and the case is now in appeal. Sources said apart from Kharge,Katara had also appealed to Congress general secretary Digvijaya Singh to extend her stay in the house.
WITH the Congress and Samajwadi Party continuing their love-hate relationship,Congress leaders on Tuesday alleged that SP strongman Azam Khan was trying to prevent Rahul Gandhis rally at Rampur on Wednesday from attracting huge crowds. Congressmen said that to achieve this,Khan,a close associate of SP chief Mulayam Singh Yadav and the Muslim face of the party,is holding a workers meeting at Rampur on Wednesday,in a bid to ensure that Congress supporters from the neighbouring 3-4 constituencies dont make it to Rahuls rally. Khan is the MLA from Rampur.