The appointment of the state police chief has become a tug-of-war between the Congress and its alliance partner, the Nationalist Congress Party.
A state government panel has zeroed in on the three officers: A N Roy, Hasan Gafoor and P P Srivastava. Chief Minister Ashok Chavan is rooting for Gafoor, notwithstanding the adverse references to him in the Ram Pradhan report on 26/11 attacks. Home Minister R R Patil, on the other hand, favours Roy. The state, it seems, will get the new police chief only after the two parties reach a consensus. They have not learnt any lessons from 26/11 yet.
When it comes to public posturing, our netas know how to outdo their rivals.
Last Wednesday, city NCP unit requested party leader and Water Resources minister Ajit Pawar to give more water to the city.
To pre-empt the NCP's move, the Shiv Sena called a meeting with civic officials on Tuesday. Soon after, the Sena team, led by Mayor Shraddha Jadhav, announced that it had asked the civic body to scrap the plan for water cut. Now the question is: Why did the Sena-led civic body take the decision on water cut in the first place and why didn't the state government decide to release more water earlier? Just to score some brownie points.
Talking about Ajit Pawar. NCP Chief Sharad Pawar's nephew is known to be an outspoken person. When the money being spent on refurbishing ministers' cabins snowballed into a controversy, Pawar's advice was: “The money spent should be recovered from the ministers.” It’s a different thing that there were few takers for the advice. Bureaucrats recall that Pawar had shot down a proposal of a swimming pool on each floor of the residential tower that was proposed to replace the existing bungalows of ministers. His argument was that ministers could take a dip in private swimming pools instead of wasting government’s money. One wonders whether Pawar practices what he preaches?
Draft in the making
It was meant to be the government's blue print for 100 days after assuming power. The idea was to show what the government planned to do in first 100 days in office — much like what the Prime Minister did at the Centre. But the state administration failed to draft the 100-day programme for Chief Minister Ashok Chavan.
The joke in Mantralaya is that the programme will be announced next month when Chavan completes 100 days in office.