Standing Up

Delhi Confidential

Even as social networking websites went viral with outrage over the gangrape incident following the death of the girl in Singapore, an old soldier has started an initiative to stand up and make a change. Lt Gen H S Panag, who retired as the Central Army Commander, has started a movement by publicly giving out his mobile number on social networking website Twitter with the promise that he would personally come or arrange for help for any girl or woman in trouble. The 'Standup movement', promoted by his daughter Gul Panag as well as son Sherbir, has already enrolled close to 700 people in different cities and towns that have pledged their phone numbers with the promise of coming to the help of women in distress, whenever called.

POWER PLAY

IN a bid to involve and co-opt public representatives in implementing ambitious programmes of the UPA government in power sector, Power Minister Jyotiraditya Scindia has written to over 400 MPs giving them specific constituency-wise status report of the implementation of central schemes like Rajiv Gandhi Grameen Vidyutikaran Yojana (RGGVY) and Restructured Accelerated Power Development and Reforms Programme (RAPDRP). He has designed a 'monitoring matrix' for them to capture at a glance component-wise status of the project and exhorted the MPs to ask local representative of the implementing agency concerned to furnish progress information in this format on a regular basis for their appraisal. Scindia has even got the Rural Development Ministry to include RGGVY as an agenda item at district level vigilance and monitoring committee so as to review the progress of the scheme in the presence of public representatives and district level officers using the same matrix. The young minister can only hope that his colleagues in Parliament see the importance of his initiatives in their 'electoral matrix'.

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