Home Minister P Chidambaram has moved with characteristic efficiency to finish the task of four GoMs that were put under his charge after Pranab Mukherjees exit from the Cabinet. Two of these four GoMs those on auction of 3G spectrum and on civil aviation sector have finalised and submitted their recommendations to the Cabinet. The GoM on spectrum has had four meetings in less than two weeks to come to a conclusion while the civil aviation GoM required just one meeting. The other two GoMs one on the coal sector and the other to amend the Competition Act have each held one meeting so far. It is expected that these two GoMs would also finalise their suggestion at their next meetings expected later this week.
HRD Minister Kapil Sibal will,in a few months,lose his very dependable and trusted private secretary Haryana cadre IAS officer V Umashankar. Umashankars batch is all set to be empanelled to joint secretary level,which means he can no longer serve in the personal staff of a minister. Sibal is learnt to have already zeroed in on a successor,though. And like Umashankar,his successor is also from within the ministry. Vikram Sahay,a 1993-batch IRS officer who currently handles Right to Education,is expected to be Sibals new private secretary.
HARYANA is incomparable in so far as getting the attention of the Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation (HUPA) is concerned. Between April 2011 and January this year,a period of less than nine months, HUPA Minister Kumari Selja travelled outside Delhi on official visits 40 times,27 of which took her to Haryana,to places in and around Ambala. It apparently is just a coincidence that Haryana happens to be the home state of the minister and Ambala her Lok Sabha constituency. The only places outside of the state that she visited in official capacity were Mumbai,Bangalore,Hyderabad,Kolkata,Udaipur,Jaipur,Aizawl and Goa.
While Team Anna has been accusing the media of underplaying its latest sit-in fast at Jantar Mantar and boasting of several km long queues at the gates,the desperate calls to get film stars on stage seems intriguing. The latest tweet from Kiran Bedi said it all: Amir_khan people at Jantar Mantar r calling for you. Its kranti against corruption which you are awakening all too! Its your time to achieve. In another tweet,she named the people she wanted to join the movement: Dr (A P J) Abdul Kalam,Aamir Khan,Amitabh Bachchan,(N R) Narayana Murthy,(E) Shreedharan,Bhure Lal and,not surprisingly,General (V K) Singh.
The recent poll reverses in Uttar Pradesh seem to have led to re-allocation of work and responsibility in Rahul Gandhis secretariat at 12,Tughlaq Lane. While there is a noticeable change in the way Rahuls close aides have now started ‘responding to senior leaders,there is also the rise of a new star at the Tughlaq Lane office Barmer MP Harish Choudhary. The 42-year old economics post-graduate seems to have gained Rahuls trust and is said to have coordinated the AICC leaders visit to different states in recent times.