A superstitious minister has forced Karnataka’s eight-monthold Congress government to backtrack from its earlier promise to bring in a law against, well, religious superstition. CM Siddaramaiah was left red-faced after it emerged that Social Welfare Minister H Anjaneya had decided to raze a wall in his office for reasons of vastu. He had no permission for such alteration. What made it worse was that such permission had earlier been denied to ministers in the previous BJP regime. To avoid embarrassment, the government tried to put a gag on the media from visiting the minister’s rooms. Last heard, the CM ordered Anjaneya to focus on his work rather than on the wall.
Digvijaya Singh’s efforts to install his protégé Ajay Singh as the Leader of the Opposition in the Madhya Pradesh Assembly are stuck in the mud. Union ministers Kamal Nath and Jyotiraditya Scindia backed a rival candidate who, too, is a Thakur. Two Brahmin mlas jumped in the fray, too. Digivjaya organised a huge crowd outside the venue, but the four contenders got equal votes. The final decision has been left to Sonia Gandhi.
His PM’s Voice
There’s been a rift between Jagan Reddy and his sister, Sharmila. Jagan has decided to keep her and their mother, Vijayamma, out of the fray in the Lok Sabha polls. A recent interview with her on Jaganowned Sakshi TV shocked observers as the interviewer directly asked Sharmila on the rumoured rift between the siblings. Last year, while Jagan was in prison, the channel had portrayed her as the upholder of their father, the late CM YS Rajasekhara Reddy’s legacy during her 3,000-km padyatra.
PDP leader Mehbooba Mufti’s praise for BJP leader Narendra Modi in an interview has sparked speculation in Jammu & Kashmir that she may seek an alliance with the BJP. In the 2008 Assembly polls, the bjp won 11 of the state’s 87 seats. But as the BJP is a political pariah for the Valley-centric parties, PDP insiders are cautioning Mehbooba against any hasty decision, lest they lose their base among the Muslim majority.
He’s No Saint
Congress leader Ajit Jogi’s decision to take a one-year sanyas to do “soul-searching” following last month’s Chhattisgarh election loss has become a joke. CM Raman Singh quipped that sanyas should be forever. Bhajan singers performing at Jogi’s residence are adding to the amusement. Meanwhile, Jogi’s wife Renu was elected deputy leader of the CLP, a post no one knew existed. Everyone is sure the sanyas would end before the Lok Sabha election.