ONLY IN THE CONGRESS

Last week, Rahul Gandhi did a minor reshuffle at the Congress HQ, replacing Janardan Dwivedi as general secretary in charge of organisation and training with Ashok Gehlot. This sent a two-fold message, one was to the AICC that while he would be taking the older generation along in his new team, he would be replacing some of his mother’s advisors with those whom he has a better rapport with. Two, by placing Gehlot at the party HQ, he has freed Sachin Pilot, the PCC chief in Rajasthan, from Gehlot’s over-arching presence. But what is interesting is that the letter announcing Dwivedi’s replacement and thanking him for his “hard work and contribution” was signed by none other than the outgoing general secretary Janardan Dwivedi himself as his last act in office. Known to be a stickler for protocol, even Dwivedi-ji would have appreciated the irony of this one!

CABINET COUP

The Cabinet is abuzz about the rivalry amongst two of its women ministers. Interestingly, last week one of them was due to be the chief guest at a media event, but a last minute Cabinet meeting clashed with the timing and she cried off literally at the very last minute—that is the night before the event. No matter, when her rival and Cabinet colleague heard of this, she immediately agreed to step in with a proviso—that the function be brought forward by two hours so that she could attend both the media function and after that be present at the Cabinet meet. So with a little bit of out-of-the-box thinking, she managed to please everyone and stole a march, or an event, over her bête-noir.

MISSING THE TICKET TO RIDE

Anyone heard the story about the Congress Rajya Sabha member who got a last minute nomination but couldn’t reach the destination in time to file his nomination? A former Rajya Sabha member from Maharashtra managed to persuade the party “high command” on the very last day of filing nominations to re-nominate him from Gujarat. He was given the okay, but just his luck that Ahmedabad airport was closed for two hours that day due to VIP movement. So though he had a chartered plane on standby, he could not make it in time to file his nomination and hence missed his ticket to ride, quite literally.

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