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Once bitten twice shy

india Updated: Sep 24, 2006 15:36 IST
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BJP National President Rajnath Singh’s caution against falling into media trap was apparent in Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan’s dealing with newsmen on Friday. When journalists sought his comments on the removal of Swaraj Puri as DGP, Chouhan remained tight-lipped.

They chased him again at Sunderlal Patwa’s residence but there too the Chief Minister disappointed them. Chouhan asked them to meet Public Relations Minister Narendra Tomar who, in turn, said, “Let the order come first.”
Congress goes ‘silent’

State Congress has discovered the significance of silent protests. Party workers resorted to the Gandhian mode of satyagriha on several occasions to express their protests in the recent past. All protests organised by the Congress following Prof Sabharwal’s death were ‘silent’. A party activist said the strategy has little to do with Mahatma Gandhi. It is, in fact, aimed at sparing State Congress chief Subhash Yadav of the onerous task of speech-making, something he is ill-at-ease doing.

Mission accomplished
On one count, however, ABVP’s stars shone brilliantly. The mobile sms campaign launched on its behalf has finally yielded results. The sms - `Remove DGP, save BJP, says ABVP’ - had started doing the rounds about three-four days before Puri’s removal on Friday. The sms was sent to several people.

Planetary curse!
Misfortune is not leaving the beleaguered ABVP. Circumstances have forced it to burn effigies of its own ex-leader, who is now Chief Minister, over the Sabharwal issue. Even on an issue it had the CM’s support, ABVP suffered a major setback as the Madhya Pradesh High Court validated DMAT-2006.

Not only the organisation, its leaders also seem to be under the bad spell of stars. During a couple of recent press conferences, journalists noticed that two senior ABVP office-bearers were facing health problems like torn ligaments in leg and fractured hand. When this was pointed out, a member remarked, “It seems planets have cast an evil eye on the ABVP.” Some media persons hastily suggested that they should probably organise a yagna and mass feasts to neutralise the evil effects.

No deal in Pitra Paksh
On September 19, Cooperatives Minister Gopal Bhargava was scheduled to sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Reserve Bank of India and NABARD for Rs 2,500 crore that the State Government is to receive for improving cooperative banks as per the recommendations of the Vaidyanathan Committee. All preparations had been made.

At the 11th hour, however, some one pointed out to the minister that Pitra Paksh is still on and put off the deal. The argument was that if Hindus do not buy anything for their homes in this inauspicious fortnight, why make such a huge financial deal in the period. The minister immediately deferred the signing of the MoU.    

Charm of CS office
For almost a decade now, Seema Sharma is at the Chief Secretary’s office. Many chief secretaries have come and gone but the promotee IAS officer has remained on the post. She could easily have become a district collector but she preferred the CS office. Her only stint as collector had been in Narsinghpur for six months when K S Sharma was Chief Secretary. She returned to the earlier post and continues to hold it.

Contributed by Ranjan,
Ashutosh Shukla, Manish Dixit, Sravani Sarkar and Gaurav Chandra