Study Time

Delhi Confidential

HRD Minister Pallam Raju claims his new portfolio is rather demanding. At the release of an education report recently, the minister mentioned how his son who is in the ninth grade has to wake up at 6 am everyday to leave for school. He then added that he has also been giving company to his son, waking up at the same time because there is just so much to study and understand in the HRD Ministry.

Advance Notice

DRAMATIC as the Congress tried it to make it, the fact is that most of the senior members of the CWC had clear notice about Rahul Gandhi's possible promotion to the number two position in the party. While many party leaders made it seem like the appointment of Rahul as vice-president was the result of spontaneous demands at the ongoing party conclave in Jaipur, the almost simultaneous celebrations, complete with drum beats and firecrackers, gave away the game. A number of relatively junior leaders as well, it is learnt, had been sounded out well in advance to get the people and drums to the venue.

Bitter Medicine

MORE than a year after it was first introduced in Kerala and Tamil Nadu, the pentavalent vaccine has suddenly become the focus of a medical debate. A group of intellectuals and doctors recently wrote to the Health Secretary alleging unacceptable numbers of deaths in infants who had been administered the vaccine and protested against its introduction in other states. In retaliation, the Indian Academy of Paediatrics issued a suo motu statement commending the government's efforts in providing free pentavalent vaccines. What has left many in the ministry wondering though is that when these vaccines have been available in the market, at a steep price, for a long time why the questions over their efficacy is being raised at a time when the government has decided to administer them for free.

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