June 26, 2013 12:12:55 am
ITBP officials involved in rescue operation in flood-hit Uttarakhand were informed of Rahul Gandhis visit only an hour before his departure from Delhi. Since he had to make a stopover at Gauchar,the official mess of the 8th battalion where officers involved in relief measures for the past one week are housed,were asked to vacate the premises and arrangements were made for Rahuls stay there. Since Gandhi is an SPG protectee,arrangements had to be made for his security personnel as well. Meanwhile,the Congress,which had accused Narendra Modi of politicising the tragedy in Uttarakhand,was at pains on Tuesday to explain how his visit was very different from that of Modi. Party spokesperson Renuka Chowdhury argued that Rahul was travelling in personal vehicles driven by his friends,and his visit neither diverted the resources of the state government nor did it hamper the rescue work.
All through the disaster in Uttarakhand,the National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) had been working without a full-time boss. The post of NDRF DG had been lying vacant since May 31 when P M Nair retired from that position. Director general of ITBP Ajay Chaddha had been holding additional charge of NDRF. Now when the most difficult phase of the tragedy in Uttarakhand is over,the NDRF has got a new boss. On Tuesday,the government named Krishna Chaudhary,a 1979-batch IPS officer of the Bihar cadre,as the new director general of NDRF.
After serving as an Officer on Special Duty for two months,Anil Goswami,an IAS officer of J&K cadre,will assume office as Home Secretary on Sunday evening. A taking-over ceremony on Sunday has nothing to do with auspicious timing. Its just that the final day of the outgoing Home Secretary R K Singh happens to be June 30,a Sunday,and he did not want to relinquish the office a day earlier. Meanwhile,officials of the rank of joint secretary and above have contributed Rs 10,000 each for a farewell dinner for Singh which is being organised on Saturday evening.
NO PAK BEAT
There is never a dull moment in India-Pakistan relations. Just when it seemed that a positive environment was on the horizon,comes the news that there might not be any Indian journalist based in Pakistan after this month. The only two journalists that are allowed,from PTI and The Hindu,have ended their tenure,but their successors have not been given visas by Islamabad till now. The delay in processing of visas of the Indian journalists,for posting in Islamabad,has given rise to speculation that the new Pakistan establishment under Nawaz Sharif might be hardening its stand towards New Delhi.
When President Pranab Mukherjee gives away the first ever National Awards for Prevention of Alcoholism and Substance Abuse on Wednesday,he will be distributing only seven instead of the 10 awards originally planned. The jury headed by Social Justice and Empowerment Minister Kumari Selja could not find deserving nominees for the best educational institution,best innovation and outstanding individual achievement awards.
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