The Empty Seat at Rahul’s CWC
Rahul Gandhi has finally reshuffled his CWC, but the change certainly hasn’t been as radical as he had promised. If you recall, in March this year when he had dissolved the Working Committee, Sonia Gandhi had advised him to bring in fresh faces and create his own team. However, some of the old guard still lingers though a few have been shown the door. While most of the exits, except Digvijaya Singh’s, were predicted, Team Rahul is particularly chuffed about C.P. Joshi who had been given charge of as many as 16 states under Sonia’s regime. And his performance had been lacklustre at best. Of course, the Gogois have come out as the ultimate winners for, apart from Sonia and Rahul, they are the only two generational duo from one family who have made it to the CWC. While Deepender Hooda is in, his father is not. As for those who are left out—Shashi Tharoor and Jairam Ramesh’s exclusion is the most surprising, as is Milind Deora’s. But there is hope because although the CWC is a 24-member body, only 23 names have been announced. So who has Rahul kept a seat vacant for?
The Dark Horse
Suddenly there was a lot of buzz around former Vice President Hamid Ansari. Part of it was of course the fact that he had just come out with a collection of his essays. Published by Har Anand, the title very provocatively asks Dare I Question? In the spate of interviews that followed, he spoke about his concern about the current social environment for that was a controversy that marked his departure from office. This set off speculation in the corridors of power as to whether the octogenarian and former diplomat was offering himself as an alternate consensus candidate for Prime Minister from the Opposition camp. After all, their other choice, former President Pranab Mukherjee, had blown his chances with his visit to the RSS HQ. Well, watch this space for more.
The Accent, not the Words
During the No-Confidence Motion, there was a suddenly a lot of focus on not what TDP MP Jayadev Galla had to say, but his accent. The TDP MP is a graduate from the University of Illinois. But there’s a reason for focusing on his accent—the reference was to Cabinet Minister Piyush Goyal’s earlier comment about Shashi Tharoor when he had remarked that he had trouble understanding Tharoor’s “foreign accent”. To which Tharoor had replied via a tweet—“Interesting to see that Piyush Goyal says he can’t understand my words; that explains why his party keeps misunderstanding them and distorting them”. Go figure!