The buzz: keeping tabs on the political grapevine

A ruse with no use
Punjab Pradesh Congress chief Partap Singh Bajwa has kicked up a row by allegedly using Sonia Gandhi’s name to bring party leaders and workers from the state to Delhi on Sunday. According to some MLAs, Bajwa had assured them that a package for the flood-hit Malwa region would be announced after their meeting with the Congress president. Sonia never met them and instead, they were later told to hold a dharna against Narendra Modi outside Gujarat Bhavan to protest the eviction of Sikh farmers from Kutch. Lured by false promises.

In for some replacement therapy
With Lalu Prasad being convicted in the fodder scam, speculation has begun in Bihar’s political circles on how the powerful Yadav community was going to react. Bihar politicians feel that the Yadavs may throw their weight behind the BJP in order to teach Lalu’s arch rival Nitish Kumar a lesson. If that were to happen, the BJP’s poll prospects would further improve and a new Yadav leader could very well emerge in the state. Lalu had once replaced Ram Lakhan Singh Yadav as the top Yadav leader. Who could be waiting in the wings?

His lucky charm in the polls
Himachal Pradesh CM Virbhadra Singh does not hide his friendship with his Gujarat counterpart Narendra Modi, and does not hesitate to describe him as an able administrator. The reason: he considers Modi as a good talisman for him. At a Congress workers’ meeting recently, Singh recalled, “Many times, we have campaigned in the same village. But as far as Himachal Pradesh is concerned, Modi is good luck for us. When Modi was in-charge of our state (as BJP general secretary), the Congress took the lead and we won all the four Lok Sabha seats. This time, with Modi as the BJP’s face, we will win all the seats. I tell you he is not invincible.” Politics makes strange bedfellows.

Bit of a rift in the lute
Why didn’t Narendra Modi offer any praise for his good friend, Tamil Nadu CM J Jayalalithaa, when he addressed a rally in Tiruchi? TN BJP leaders say Modi was not too happy with the state government for the lack of progress in the probe into the killing of TN BJP leader “auditor” Ramesh. It is another matter that the TN government rolled out the red carpet for his travel to Tiruchi, even keeping an aircraft on standby for him. A momentary fit of irritation perhaps.


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