Archive | October, 2017

Venkaiah’s Southern Saga

Posted on 30 October 2017 by admin

The man will never learn to rise to a Constitutional position. Despite the fact that Venkaiah Naidu has been elevated to the Vice-Presidential portals, his tendency to meddle in his southern fiefs has not ended. Albeit, he spends five days a week in his Delhi outpost, it has become his habit to spend the weekends in his home state. He does not want to give up his standing as the best recognizable face in the south. Nagpur birds coo to us that la affaire south is being controlled by two heads: Venkaiah, and BJP general secretary Ram Madhav. In the meanwhile, when one asks Karnataka party in-charge Muralidhar Rao, who is idling in Delhi, what his job is, he meekly submits that he is in charge of Karnataka. But if that is so, what is the role of Prakash Javadekar, who has been entrusted the job of looking after Karnataka?

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Scribes Shut

Posted on 30 October 2017 by admin

With the change in the fiefdom of Delhi, much has changed in the media functioning in the country’s capital, and there is a severe squeeze on ‘news’. Senior scribes who earlier could stroll into South Block on Raisina Hills, meet senior officials and chat them up, as well as tank up with their own ilk, are now crestfallen. Right at the portals of what has been turned into a sanctum sanctorum, there is a stern notice reading that visitors are allowed to meet officials by appointment only. It has been also mentioned that visitors are not allowed to meet anyone else, that they are under CCTV surveillance, and that any infringement will land them in legal hassles. So it is clear that the New Delhi’s new emirate will not tolerate any hunger for news!

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Pranab da’s New Politics

Posted on 30 October 2017 by admin

Ever since former president Pranab Mukherjee has shifted out of the regal Rashtrapati Bhavan into his much tinier 10 Rajaji Marg duplex bungalow, he has turned a complete family man. On the top floor of the bungalow lives his daughter Sharmistha who is the spokesperson of Delhi state Congress party. In the two rooms on the ground floor, Pranab da has set up his library and office. It is a legend now that Pranab da is very fond of reading and the bungalow has a rich library. But his daughter coming to live with him has become possible only after he shifted out of Rashtrapati Bhavan. Being a stickler for protocol, he had not allowed his own daughter Sharmistha to stay with him, as she was a senior leader of a political party, and the President is supposed to be non-partisan. But now that is not required. Now Dada is finalizing the list of all those who wish to meet him, and his daughter helping him out with that. And right time too… for the Congress leaders to march in and out of his bungalow seeking his mentorship on la affaire politique!

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Cyber bombs on Harsh Vardhan!

Posted on 30 October 2017 by admin

Union minister for science and technology, environment and climate change, Harsh Vardhan often misreads the saffron writs and wear them as badges on his wrists. Once he used to be the top mandarin of saffron politics in the Capital, but since the enshrinement of Modi in the Delhi Sultanate, his wings have been clipped. And this came into flashlights this Dipawali. It is known that the minister had for long been an ardent advocate of a clean and green Diwali, without firecrackers. So the moment the Supreme Court ruled that there would be no firecrackers allowed in Delhi-NCR, Harsh Vardhan took to his Twitter handle and wrote that this is a fillip to his long-standing campaign. That was enough to set the fire on the fuse of ultra-Hindutva elements. By then the senior Sangh leadership had made known its grouse against the order. And that set off the fireworks in the Hindutva camp, which started trolling Harsh Vardhan such viciously that within five hours, the hapless minister had to delete his tweet. Then and then alone could he receive Diwali greetings on Twitter.

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Himachal’s Politics

Posted on 30 October 2017 by admin

While the outcome of the polls in the pristine hill state of Himachal Pradesh remain unconfirmed as of now, it is a given that if perchance the BJP comes to power, current Union health minister JP Nadda will be the party’s choice as the chief minister. This has suitably irked the Dhumal family, a leading light in state politics. So much so that former CM Prem Kumar Dhumal, when asked his reaction media persons to Nadda’s likely anointment as CM, he blurted out: “God save Himachal!”

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Rahul’s New ‘Durga’

Posted on 30 October 2017 by admin

It is Rahul Gandhi in a new avatar, fiercely incendiary on the social media, a form has never seen before, paying back the Modi brigade in the same coin. And synoptically, unlike in the past, when his response team was a laggard. The name and face behind this metamorphosis are becoming increasingly known. It is none other than former Kannada film actress Divya Sandan, aka Ramya, who has turned the run-up to the Gujarat polls into nothing short of a ‘surgical strike’ on Modi’s verbal raids.
Just before setting off for his recent US tour, RaGa had sacked the former head of the Congress IT Cell, Deepender Hooda, and anointed Ramaiya as the top gun. Ramya was already a part of the Congress IT Cell, but her words were usually dumped in the bin. Hooda was handling the team in his own manner, which many in Team Rahul felt was marked by very late responses, leaving Modi a fast lane against Rahul in the race, allowing Modi’s social media brigade clear space and time to troll Rahul. But no longer. Divya, aka Ramya has enraged Modi with the slogan “Vikas gando thayo che” in Gujarat, that is, “development has gone berserk”. Rahul is now on the offensive, with lampooning GST as Gabbar Singh Tax, a marauder. Rahul has given a free hand to Divya to run the cell and lo and behold! Whereas earlier the cell had a mere 5 per cent women force, now the ladies account for as much as 85 per cent. And the size of the cell too has doubled. So now Rahul is returning fire to Modi in an unprecedentedly fierce manner.

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Yogi’s media massacre

Posted on 30 October 2017 by admin

In Uttar Pradesh, the media’s free-for-all is over. Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath has put ‘speed governors’ on the media mandarins who were minting money under the Akhilesh Yadav dispensation. Hundreds of ‘fake’, or hardly existing newspapers had mushroomed during the Akhilesh Raj and were fleecing the government coffers of official advertisements. Now that honeymoon has flown into the dusk. Such government largesse has been stopped. Not just that. The Yogi sarkar has drawn up a list of all scribes who have their own homes in the state and yet, were enjoying almost free government accommodation for being ‘accredited’. Yogi, say insiders, was shocked to find that many such ‘journalists’ owned plush houses in posh localities but had rented these out. One such person had leased his home to a bank for a monthly rent of Rs 3.5 lakh. Then there was another, who had rented out his house for running a restaurant! Naturally, many senior journalists are peeved and are spitting fire on the Yogi government.

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Kapil Dev’s new Innings with BJP

Posted on 25 October 2017 by admin

Ever since Navjot Singh Siddhu, former cricket-star and mouth-shooting politico ditched his BJP mentors and joined the Congress, the party had been widening its radar for a charismatic and popular face in Punjab. So it is likely to counter the hard-hitting willower with the pacer Kapil Dev. It is learnt that Kapil is likely to join BJP soon and a conclusive meeting between him and the saffron high command has already taken place. The single but formidable spanner in the wheel seems to be Romi, wife of Kapil. She has sat down firmly on her demand that Kapil must replace Manohar Lal Khattar as the Haryana CM. The day the party resolves this issue, Kapil will start wearing his saffron pagri.

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Blunting the nib!

Posted on 25 October 2017 by admin

The heiress to a media empire in New Delhi was trying hard to get an appointment with the Delhi Nizam to invite him for her media conclave. She did get to meet the Modi, but in their discussion, it was made amply clear to the dapper lady of the arts that at the head of her star newspaper was a left-oriented intellectual who the Nizam much hated. Why? Because he had been running a campaign that recorded where all, after saffronisation of Indian politics, communal tension had peaked and in fact led to riots. The paper had shown this using graphics. 7 RCR put its foot down: the ‘commie’ has to go. In fact, one of the top intellectuals, the editor had been ushered in with much fanfare to the media stable, had been allocated a sprawling, plus bungalow in Lutein’s Delhi and had been chaperoned about in a glitzy Merc, top bracket.
It is known that the newspaper management had planned to retain the services of the editor till December, so that the transition could be seamless. But the ‘desires’ of the Boss was met and the editor was shown the door, crash course. This was not just a stray incident of media purging. Three top journos of an economic daily were also shown the door. There was a time when Ashok Road would go by what the media said. Now Ashok Road has busted the media, perhaps in vengeance!

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Political-Economy

Posted on 25 October 2017 by admin

Since the time of the first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru till now under the seemingly tottering establishment of Narendra Modi, there has always been daggers’ drawn between a popular PM and his economist finance minister. Though Modi is known for his stiff economic measures, yet, he has to from time to time take a shelter for retaining his popular base. The Nehru regime had repeatedly shown how the premier had given precedence to economists and scientists to his babus, and Modi seems to be just towing the line. And this is perhaps why Finance Minister Arun Jaitley has gotten sidelined in his own ministry. It is very clear that the IAS lobby is calling all the shots regarding the economy and the economist bunch has been reduced to become ringside viewers. Evidently, the PMO has been taking all the decisions which are then being passed out under the benign signature of a obliging civil servant know to the world as Hansmukh Adhiya.
The departure of the fabled economist Raghuram Rajan, former RBI chief, was due to this strife between experts and self-serving generalists, called IAS officers, the staunch Modi-bhakt economist Arvind Panagaria also had to set sail back to his US institute. The latest in the line of such dramatis personae if Arvind Subramanium, who had been foisted as the Boss’ chief economic advisor, flying past Rajan in 2014. It will be a long while when one forgets Subramanium’s critical statement of demonetisation as an ‘infantile’ decision. Now he is in the woods of the sprawling PM house. Subramanium was to rejoin his Oxford post from October 16, but post haste, Jaitley twitted that his tenure at the top job has been extended by a year. That bolted the door before the horse could fly! That seems to have worked for now, but what next?

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