Maya of Money
The same old song has returned to haunt blue brigade. Expelled BSP leaders held a joint press conference on Thursday and accused party chief Mayawati of extortion and her confidant S C Mishra of blackmailing leaders.
Congress turncoat Ajay Srivastava, who joined the BSP just ahead of the 2017 UP polls, said, “BSP wooed me by promising a ticket and support to contest the polls as I did not have enough money. They asked for `25 lakh at the time of filing nomination papers.” He also accused Mayawati of threatening BSP leaders if they fail to arrange money.
Social media set the corridors of power aflutter again by creating a false buzz that 1.60 lakh government schools in UP will remain open on Sunday, September 17, to celebrate PM Modi’s birthday as Swachchhta Diwas. State Basic Education Minister Anupama Jaiswal, who was quoted in one of the reports, issued a rushed clarification that she never gave such an order. CM Yogi Adityanath was also trolled on social media for obsequiousness and PM Narendra Modi for self-aggrandisement.
Union MoS for Social Justice and founder-leader of the Republican Party of India Ramdas Athavale recently announced the formation of a “children’s front” of his party. His 12-year-old son Jeet was made chairperson of the front. Last year, Athavale’s wife Seema had taken over as chairperson of the women’s wing of the party. Athavale loyalists say he won’t give any air to the winds of nepotism in the party but gave in to the pressure from party workers who were insisting on his family’s involvement in politics.
Party Time in Politics
Even as Lol Sabha MP from Mhada, Raju Shetty, said his Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana (SSS) has broken away from the NDA, his one-time confident Sadabhau Khot announced the formation of a new party to take on the SSS. Khot is a minister in CM Devendra Fadnavis’ Cabinet and was served a show cause notice by the party after his differences with Shetty. The leaders who fought for farmers rights together have now vouched to do so with more vigour but against each other.
Pretty Pair in Politics
When a picture of Tej Pratap Yadav with a comely woman went viral on social media, everyone wanted to know who she was and what was cooking. Yadav, 29, who was Bihar’s health minister for 20 months, is one of the state’s most suitable bachelors along with his younger brother Tejaswi Yadav, who was deputy CM.
The lady was the 25-year-old spokesperson of Samajwadi Party and Delhi resident Pankhuri Pathak. The photo was taken during RJD chief Lalu Prasad Yadav’s ‘Opposition unity’ rally on August 27. “It was only a brief meeting of two young leaders,” said an aide of the RJD boss.
Bridges of Memory
Nand Kishore Yadav of BJP and Tejaswi Yadav of RJD were locked in a war of words over the construction of bridges across rivers in Bihar. Nand Kishore, the road construction minister, was taken aback when Tejaswi, who held the portfolio during the erstwhile grand alliance government, claimed credit for four bridges.
“The young politician should do a fact check by calling for files on the bridges. Plans for them and work were initiated when I was the minister earlier. He should rejig his memory,” he said. This being a fact known by all, Tejaswi had nothing to say.
Darling Versus Villain
CM Nitish Kumar was ‘hurt’ when his former ally and arch rival Lalu Prasad Yadav taunted him when no one from the JD(U) was inducted in the Union Cabinet in the recent expansion.
“Speculation was made in the media without anyone confirming it with me. This gave a chance to the media’s darling to say many things,” said Nitish. RJD leaders were amused by the CM’s new epithet for Lalu. “It is good that Nitish says Laluji is the media’s darling, but he must answer why he has become the villain,” said senior RJD leader and former finance minister Abdul Bari Siddiqui.
Preparing the ground for the 2018 panchayat elections in the state, West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee warned party workers that if they wanted to defect to BJP or CPM, they should do it now and not before the elections. The announcement came as a surprise and pointed at the growing clout of BJP in the state, as well as Mamata’s knowledge about TMC workers moving to BJP.
Kerala to West Bengal
RSS pracharak from Kerala and former Madhya Pradesh BJP general secretary Arvind Menon may take over as the new BJP observer of West Bengal from BJP national general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya, whose name had cropped up in the Jalpaiguri child trafficking racket. Menon quietly visited West Bengal and met top BJP leaders. He will accompany BJP president Amit Shah during his visit to the state from September 11 to 13.