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Pillow a fast one

Punjab ministers and Akali-BJP MLAs were in Delhi recently to demand a farmers’ package from the PM.

india Updated: Aug 31, 2009 23:15 IST

Punjab ministers and Akali-BJP MLAs were in Delhi recently to demand a farmers’ package from the PM. Their stay had been thoughtfully arranged at Punjab Bhawan in the Capital. When the contingent arrived, the VIPs were faced with a rather fluffy crisis: pillow covers in many of the rooms were either missing or dirty. Some guests threw their weight around to get a pair of pillow covers; others weren’t so lucky. They were told that there was a shortage of pillow covers for the last two months and that the new contractor was doing his best to get them. Thinking out of the box — or bed, in this case — one part-time solution was suggested: cover your pillow with a bedsheet.

Home is where their hearts are

Everybody, irrespective of which side of the fence they may be sitting on, seems to love the Home Minister. At a recent conference on internal security, P. Chidambaram came in for some rare praise from unexpected quarters — Gujarat and Bihar CMs Narendra Modi and Nitish Kumar. Both were quite vocal about how much they appreciated Chidambaram’s handling of their concerns. In his concluding speech, the Home Minister returned the gesture by acknowledging the suggestions that had come from the CMs of BJP-ruled states. Now that’s touching bipartisan bonhomie.

Kulkarni’s learning curve

Now that he’s out of the BJP, Sudheendra Kulkarni, one-time confidant of L.K. Advani, is considering a new innings away from politics. He went to meet Planning Commission member Mihir Shah last week to learn more about rural development and drought. He is said to have told Shah, who has worked in rural India for more than 35 years and knows more than a thing or two about agrarian crises and rural distress, that he wanted to learn about areas of concern like agriculture stress and drought. The two were together for almost 30 minutes during which they apparently also discussed governance in Madhya Pradesh, which happens to be Shah’s (BJP-ruled) home state.

Caught in traffic thanks to...

Mrs Gursharan Kaur, the Prime Minister’s wife, got a taste of what it is like to be an aam aadmi. She was recently caught in a traffic snarl caused by a passing VVIP cavalcade — her hubby Manmohan Singh’s to be precise who was on his way back from Vigyan Bhavan after inaugurating a meeting of chief ministers on internal security. The National Security Guard (NSG) escorts with her rushed out but could do got little as Mrs Kaur’s husband’s cavalcade swept by. And to think we complain.

Feed you, snacks for you, always

One would expect questions about crime or traffic problems at a media briefing by the Delhi Police Commissioner. But when a reporter complained that there were no snacks for mediapersons whenever there was a briefing Yudhvir Singh Dadwal was stumped. All he could do was promptly ask his officers to ensure that refreshments are arranged the next time.

Too busy for the posterboy

It’s been over 100 days since C.P. Joshi took over as Rural Development Minister from Raghuvansh Prasad Singh, but the latter’s posters can still be seen along the corridors of Krishi Bhavan. An official quipped: “Lagta hai Joshiji ki nazar nahin padi hai in posters par abhi tak (It seems that Joshiji hasn’t seen these posters so far).” Which could mean Joshi has been terribly busy doing his job.