Panagariya ensured bullet train deal
Niti Aayog vice chairman Arvind Panagariya played a big role in the bullet train deal with Japan. He went to Japan five times before the deal was finalised. The entire management of the bullet trains project has also been given to Niti Aayog.
Babus come in way of overseas talent hunt
The government’s plan to recruit talent from Indians settled abroad has met a bureaucratic roadblock, with the Department of Personnel & Training (DoPT) maintaining that such recruits join at least a notch lower than IAS officers serving in the government. Clearly, babus are proving to be difficult.
Shatrughan was torn between two women
Anything but Khamosh, Shatrughan Sinha’s biography by journalist and film critic Bharati Pradhan and published by Om Books International, is in true Shotgun style — straight from the hip. SS, as Pradhan calls him, just cannot resist talking. And talk frankly about everything, including his political and personal life, including the fact that it took him 14 long years since he first set his eyes on his would-be wife Poonam Chandiramani in 1965 for her to become Poonam Sinha. In between, Shatrughan has admitted of having a famous affair with his co-star and actress Reena Roy and that Poonam was well aware of this. When he wedded Poonam, it was a public rejection for Reena Roy. But “she was very gracious,” says Shatrughan in the biography, which is based on 37 interviews. However, Shatrughan admits that he continued to be torn between his wife and Reena Roy even after his marriage and that his relationship with his wife took time to get sorted out. The actress “helped” Shatrughan make up his mind when she found a husband in cricketer Mohsin Khan, but what “shocked” Shatrughan was when his own brother Dr Ram Sinha told him to take Reena Roy as his second wife. The book also reveals that Shatru has an “excellent relationship” with the family of the late Pakistan dictator Muhammad Zia-ul-Haq and is the “rakhi brother” to his daughter Zain. In the biography, which will be launched in the first week of January, Shatrughan has also told his biographer that he took to Twitter to air his comments of being “extremely upset” at being sidelined in his party despite his Lok Sabha wins in Bihar. Shatrughan considers his tweets more advisory than accusatory, “cautioning” his party against counting on an “anti-incumbency factor” in Bihar and on the need to name the party’s chief ministerial candidate. There are many more instances in the book of his “defiant” tweets. Pradhan says that the more defiant his tweets became, Shatrughan was “anything but khamosh”.
Pawar is nervous
The Enforcement Directorate has attached assets worth Rs 110 crore belonging to a realty firm as part of its money laundering probe against Nationalist Congress Party leader and former Maharashtra PWD minister Chhagan Bhujbal. This is being seen as the Devendra Fadnavis government’s way of retaliation against the NCP’s recent anti-BJP moves in the just concluded Maharashtra Assembly session in Nagpur when the NCP stalled the House proceedings for nearly a week on the “farmers’ suicide” issue. The ED raid happened soon after this. This has made NCP chief Sharad Pawar a bit nervous. It seems the ED is also opening cases against his nephew Ajit Pawar who was Deputy Chief Minister in the previous Congress-led government.
TMC MP makes documentary
Trinamool Congress’ Rajya Sabha MP Sukhendu Shekhar Roy is not a politician who can fit in West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee’s style of politics. Roy is a multifaceted man, capable of composing music and writing lyrics. He was the compère when Mohammed Rafi came to Kolkata to perform for the first time. And now, he has made a documentary on Begum Akhtar, the famous classical Ghazal singer.