PRIYANKA MAY BE CONGRESS' CM FACE IN U.P.
Priyanka Vadra may be made the Congress’ chief ministerial face in Uttar Pradesh in 2017. The thinking in the party is that for it to revive nationally, it has to return to power in UP. However, the party does not have a leader in UP who can match the stature of either Akhilesh Yadav or Mayawati. Rahul Gandhi too does not have the stature of Narendra Modi or Rajnath Singh who can canvass in any state without projecting a leader. Senior Congress leaders feel that projecting Priyanka as CM candidate will put an end to demands that she should replace Rahul nationally. In fact, this would help Rahul become Prime Minister in 2019, they feel. The final decision would be Priyanka’s, a senior Congress functionary said.
CONGRESS WANTS SONIA TO DO AN INDIRA
Sonia Gandhi’s remark that she was not afraid of anyone as she was the daughter-in-law of Indira Gandhi, seems to have been well thought-out. After Indira Gandhi’s defeat in the 1977 elections, the Janata government’s act of sending her to jail helped her to bounce back to power inside two years. Sonia Gandhi seems to be under pressure from the Congress to do an Indira Gandhi as the party does not see much hope in Rahul Gandhi reviving the party. The Congress wants Sonia Gandhi to start a movement against the “atrocities” and “baseless charges” levelled against her and her family. The BJP is dismissing this by saying that this is a matter of corruption, unlike in Indira Gandhi’s case. The buzz in the BJP is that the Congress is bargaining for a clean chit in the National Herald case, as well as in the case against Robert Vadra, for passing GST. It is also believed that Priyanka Vadra wants the GST bill passed. While Kamal Nath and Jyotiraditya Scindia opposed supporting the GST bill at a meeting this week at 10 Janpath, Sonia Gandhi shocked everyone by saying “we should not stop GST”.
MAMATA DOES SOME DRAMA
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee, while meeting Minister of State for Coal and Energy Piyush Goyal on Wednesday, resorted to some bluster. She asked a surprised Goyal when his government was planning to put Trinamool Congress MP Derek O’Brien in jail, as her MP was speaking against the Narendra Modi government.
She asked a surprised Goyal when his government was planning to put TMC MP Derek O’Brien in jail , as he was speaking against the Modi government.
She then added to the drama by saying she was not scared of anyone and was ready to go to jail. Goyal tried to pacify her, but to no avail.
MUKUL GETS AN INVITATION FOR DINNER WITH MAMATA
During her weeklong stay in Delhi, West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee hosted a high tea for journalists and state bureaucrats and later a Chinese dinner, where she invited Mukul Roy. She had banished Roy from the Trinamool Congress after his name surfaced in the Saradha scam. Such was her anger against him that no one dared to speak his name in front of her. She even got Roy to vacate the house he was living in as MP, and urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi not to admit him in the BJP. But this week, she stunned everyone present at the dinner at her nephew Abhishek’s house by asking the him to call Roy. And Roy came instantly. It was as if he knew that he was being invited. At the dinner, Roy revealed that he had stopped having non-vegetarian food from the time he was thrown out of the party and would have only vegetarian Chinese.