By Nora Chopra
GUJARAT’NEW PCC CHIEF SOLANKI IS CLOSE TO VAGHELA
Rahul Gandhi who has gone on leave to introspect about the future of the Congress Party to an undisclosed destination suffered a major setback when on Monday this week his mother and Congress president Sonia Gandhi started the process of the much awaited AICC reshuffle. Without waiting for her heir apparent Rahul Gandhi who is tipped to become the Congress President at the AICC session scheduled i next month, Sonia appointed the PCC chiefs in five states.. The fact that Sonia Gandhi who is under tremendous pressure to continue as the party president for some more time, made these appointments in Rahul Gandhi’s absence is being seen as a victory of the anti Rahul camp Gujarat which is the home state of Sonia Gandhi’s political secretary Ahmad Patel. Eyebrows were raised when finally w controversial Bharat Sinh Solanki was chosen. Solanki became PCC chief for the first time in 2005 and had then got his appointment with the consent of Ahmad Patel but then he got implicated by a CD scandal and was removed. This time he has been recommended by Rahul favourite Madhusudan Mistry. Solanki is close to Shanker Singh Vaghela who is at loggerheads with Ahmad Patel.
PM REPRIMANDS NAIDU & NAQVI FOR RAJYA SABHA DEBACLE
Both the parliamentary affairs ministers Venkaiah Naidu and Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi were taken to task by the PM Narendra Modi for not being alert in the house. It was the Prime Minister Modi who came to know that the opposition will join hands in Rajya Sabha and may bring some amendment to motion of thanks to the President’s address. He thought that it would be the Trinamool Congress which has something up its sleeve but he had no idea that it was Sitaram Yechury who would move the amendment. Modi came to the Rajya Sabha and asked both Naidu and Naqvi but they were oblivious of what was cooking. The fact that even the prime minister knew what the opposition was up to but both the parliamentary affairs ministers had no clue about it landed both Naqvi and Naidu in swoop. .When the PM summoned them for an explanation, both were heard blaming each other. They were however left with a warning but then the blame game continued even after the house was adjourned for the day.
RSS AFFILIATES ARE OPPOSING LAND ACQUISITION BILL
The Opposition is not alone to have taken on the government on the land bill. Even there is unhappiness with Modi over the land bill. In the Sangh Parivar, the RSS affiliated organizations have decided to take on the government against the land bill. The BKMS, the kisan mazdoor wing of the RSS has decided to plan a protest rally against the government if it does not withdraw the bill.. Members of the RSS were heard calling it the Rowlatt Act of the British days.
JAIRAM RAMESH EMERGING AS FRONTRUNNER FOR AICC MEDIA HEAD
Now that the AICC general secretary in charge of the communication department Ajay Maken has moved out of the AICC to the Delhi PCC creating a vacancy in the media department . lobbying is already on for Maken’s successor. The names in circulation are of Jairam Ramesh, Ambika Soni, Anand Sharma and Digvijay Singh. All four are Rajya Sabha members. Jaipal Reddy and Manish Tewari are also in the fray. If Rahul will have his way it would be Jairam Ramesh. Jairam is known for shifting loyalties. He was Ambika Soni’s protégé before the Congress came to power. Once the party came to power, he shifted his loyalties to Ahmad Patel. .
AMARINDER SINGH HAS HIS WAY IN PUNJAB CONGRESS
You have to be a Maharaja to take on Rahul Gandhi and get away with it. Congress lost Haryana just because Rahul Gandhi did not want to remove Bhupinder Singh Hooda when he was told umpteen number of times that in Haryana, the Congress cannot win with Hooda at the helm. Similarly, in Maharashtra, Rahul refused to buckle under the state leadership’s pressure to remove Prithviraj Chavan but in Punjab, when Amarinder Singh made the removal of Pratap Singh Bajwa. Rahul just refused to budge. He met all the MLAs but just refused to replace Bajwa. But now after the Congress lost in the local elections, good sense seems to have prevailed upon the Congress president and she promised to do something. It seems that Maharaja Amarinder Singh has got his way.
AMIT SHAH’S GOLDEN DAYS IN BJP ARE OVER
The great strategist that Amit Shah had come to be known in the BJP and even in other political parties, has all evaporated In thin air. Shah who had been warned that his survival would depend on the outcome of the Delhi elections, is now in for a drubbing. It was very much on display. at the recently held meeting of the BJP parliamentary board. The venue had changed. The meeting was held at the residence of Rajnath Singh and to the glee of the BJP leaders, Amit Shah who used to summon leaders to his residence, had to walk to Rajnath Singh’s residence. BJP leaders can now be heard saying though still in hushed voices that the process for a change of leadership has begun..
RAHUL GANDHI HAS TRACES OF JAWAHARLAL NEHRU’S TEMPER
The Nehru Gandhi watchers claim that this was not the first time that Rahul Gandhi has gone off after a tiff with his mother. He has done it earlier too. Once he went off to London when he wanted to get married to his foreigner girl friend and his mother is believed to have taken a stand against it. Later the family friend Oscar Fernandez was dispatched to pacify him. Rahul is said to have inherited this tendency from his great grandfather Jawaharlal Nehru. Nehru too is known for his obstinacy and was short tempered. In 1936 before he was elected the president of the Indian National Congress, he got so frustrated at the rise of the rightwingers in the Congress that he threatened to quit politics and went to Europe to attend to his ailing wife Kamala. He refused to come back despite requests from his party. In the meantime Kamala Nehru died but during that time, Congressmen got so worried that they elected him the president of the Congress. He was intimated and then persuaded to accept the position. He came back. (IPA)