Calling the shots
Calling the shots
It is no secret that when RSS speaks, the BJP must only listen. In a different sort of way, it was evident at the Vivekanand Sardhashati Samaroh (a ceremony to commemorate 150th birth anniversary of Swami Vivekanand) where RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat was the main speaker. The BJP top brass, including party president Nitin Gadkari and veteran leader L K Advani, sat in the audience. None of them was given a seat on the dais, where some religious seers found place of prominence alongside chief guest Mata Amritanandmayi.
WITH India nearing completion of two years without any case of polio being reported, the Health Ministry has stepped up its immunisation programme along the international borders to prevent the "import" of the virus from neighbouring countries. Also on the anvil are two new campaigns, the first to be launched by the President on January 20 and the other, state-specific anti-polio awareness programmes, to be kicked off from February 24. All this to ensure that the polio-free stint continues for a third consecutive year for the country to be formally declared as polio-free.
CPM's efforts to bring together Left-minded groups and individuals on a common platform have remained mostly on paper. Meanwhile, people who were once part of CPM before they either resigned or were expelled, are trying to form a separate group of their own. Prasenjit Bose — the party's young television face till he was expelled last year — and his wife Albeena Shakil are part of such efforts. Bose has joined hands with Mangat Ram Pasla, who runs CPM Punjab, and the Left Coordination Committee of Kerala whose secretary T P Chandrasekharan was murdered allegedly by CPM workers last year, to make a strong grouping outside the mainstream Left parties. Some other like-minded individuals and organisations are also joining in. The first meeting of this group will take place at the Jawaharlal Nehru University this weekend and is being organised by SFI-JNU — a group of students who recently broke away from SFI, the students' wing of CPM.