RAMDAS KATHA-WALE Ramdas Athawale was probably the only minister in Modi’s cabinet who had started to say it openly that he is going to be made a minister, even before the list was prepared by the ruling dispensation. The people in power corridor have seldom taken him seriously, so even this claim of his was taken with a pinch of salt. But now that he’s a minister, their perception has changed a bit. But then he made another mistake. He started advocating reservation for the poor among Savarnas, a topic which is dealt like a hot potato. Naturally, he again lost the plot. Last heard, he was trying to convince people that Modiji takes his opinion and advice rather seriously. But his image rehabilitation is still a far cry, with people considering his claims nothing but stories.
MULAYAM’S ‘SOFT’ STRATEGY Dealing with family squabbles and keeping a hold on the Party is proving to be too much of a stress for Mulayam Singh Yadav. To gauge his own hold on the family and the Party, he test fired the Amar Singh missile, by making him the National Secretary of the Party. While murmurs of resentment were ruthlessly crushed inside the family, he could not do anything to Azam Khan, who has become the Muslim face of the Party. However, instead of placating him, Mulayam has softly raised the bar further and has reserved the rights for ticket distribution in the coming polls. Since no one reacted to it, he looks quite happy with his position. At least for now…
KISHORE YATRA ‘PPED! Rahul Gandhi has invested too much into Prashant Kishore’s Kisan Yatra. But his journey from Deoria to Lucknow has been full of potholes and hiccups. Poor participation, lack of clear road maps and general tardiness has brought his anger to the fore. He was of the belief that this Yatra will do the same magic for him what Sadbhavna Yatra had done for his late father Rajiv Gandhi. But it looks like a far cry. This has prompted Rahul to clip Kishore’s wings. It is being rumoured now that Kishore’s role will now be limited to publicity, and strategic decisions like distribution of seats will have no intervention from the pollster. Rumour has it Rahul is also looking for Kishore’s replacement.
NO KICKBACKS! NO BACK KICKS! Manohar Parrikar is trying to sell the Rafale Deal as a big achievement for India. It is supposed to have given India an edge over not only Pakistan, but also China. While the latter claim is at the best questionable, this has not stopped him from claiming otherwise. Parrikar is very particular about his image and made it sure before signing on the deal that there were no middlemen involved. He also assured himself that everything was in order before signing the deal. He wants his stamp on the ministry, and that is what is happening.