Sunday, December 11, 2011


Heard so inside parliament 

for publication on Sunday December 11, 2011


R Rajagopalan
New Delhi
Overheard two Union Ministers of different political parties 
discussing in their mother tonge, a possible change of
Chief Minister of their state, by April 2012
In JPC on 2G, questions come from a Congress
Member E M Sudharshan  Nachiappan,
against the then Finance Minister P Chidambaram role
in clearing files on 2G, was irking  Congress leadership. 
Interestingly the JPC Member defeated the then Finance Minister
in Lok Sabha election in 1996. Nachiappan recently
used strong words against P Chidambaram
in an interview to a leading Tamil weekly
DMK, BJP and ADMK MPs enjoy Sudharshan Nachiappan
company in JPC.
V P Singh Badmore  a BJP Rajya Sabha MP from 
Rajasthan suggested to Foreign Office that Ajmer in Rajasthan
and Koyna in Tureky be declared as twin cities. As both cities
have commonalities with Sufism. Vijay Pal Singh accompanied
Vice President Ansari to Turkey recently. In a detailed note
submitted to Ministry of External Affairs by VP Singh speaks 
volumes about the Moiuniddin and Jalauiddin in both cities
Dr Hamid Ansari liked the idea of VP Singh-also taken up
this issue with both Governments-for future cultural ties
Lalithalakshmi  a Tamil Nadu  IAS officer got married with Saurav Pahari
another West Bengal cadre IAS officer. Therefore Lakshmi is given special 
permission by Union Government to get her Cadre changed to West Bengal, 
so that the married couple can be posted in one State.
In exercise of the power conferred by sub-rule (2) of Rule 5 of the Indian 
Administrative Service (Cadre) Rules. 1954, and with the concurrence of the 
Govern.  ments of Tamil Nadu and West Bengal, the Central Govt. hereby transfers Ms. 
Lalithalakshmi, IAS (TN:08) from Tamil Nadu to West Bengal cadre on ground of 
marriage to Shri Saurav Pahari, IAS (WB:08). 

Nishikant Dubey BJP MP while initiating the discussion on
Supplementary Grants in Lok Sabha begun his opening remarks
by ensuring a smile on the face of Pranab Mukherjee..
When Dubey was a student, used to listen Pranab budget speeches
but today in Lok Sabha as MP Dubey said he was disappointed
to get the arguements of pranab da. 
With a pencil in his hand, Pranab Mukherjee was seen smiling
by putting his pencil on his cheeks.
Thirumavalavan VCK on Wednesday walked out of Lok Sabha condeming
the attack on Tamils in Kerala on Mullaiperiar dam issue 
He went to Mahatma Gandhi statue inside parliament and sat dharna
Trichy Siva in Rajya Sabha spoke on Mullaiperiar Dam 
Dr V Maitreyan intervened to say, but deputy chairman
stated that MP cannot pressurise or direct the Chair 


for publication on Sunday December 11, 2011


R Rajagopalan
New Delhi

Sonia Gandhi walked too brisk in and out of Central Hall
and lobby of Parliament today, smiled at each of those
who greeted on her 66th birthday, escorted by  SPG
Tirupati Tirumala Devasthanam President Bapiraju
Congress MP presented her a special puja prasad
with Ladoo. He told her that it is Lord Balaji prasad
she smiled and accepted it.
Lalu Prasad tonsured his head, and is seen wearing a fur cap
in Parliament. He greeted Sonia Gandhi inside Lok Sabha
by walking near to her seat when proceedings begun.
S Thirunavkarasar who recently joined Congress from BJP
was in Delhi today to greet Sonia Gandhi on her birthday
Instead of his typical Tamil dress of veshti and white kurta
Thiruvakarasar came in Pyjama Kurta typical of Youth Congress
leader style. Many senior Congress leaders were taken back
to see the new attire of Arasar who was a
former Union Minister in Vajapyee Government
Deve Gowda former Prime Minsiter on Friday walked
straight into Lok Sabha at 1102 hours,without realising
the entire house is standing up in silence to mourn the death of 
hospital patients in Kolkata. Deve Gowda rushed to house
as he was keen to raise the SM Krishna issue and keen
to express his views. Gowda was alerted by watch and
ward-to walk slow as the house is mourning. Closed his
eyes-Gowda stood for a mintue. then resumed his first row seat
in Lok Sabha
Bhupender Singh Hooda Chief Minister Of Haryana entered Cetnral Hall
alone,walked alone. But in earlier occasions, he will be escorted by
State Ministers and Haryana Congress MPs. But on Friday his
political graph is sliding because, he walked alone in Central Hall.
With two helping sticks limping in Parliament, Congress MP from 
Haryana Deepender Singh Hooda spent one hour. Almost all
senior Union Ministers went near to Deepender and enquired
about the fractured right leg. Deepender is the son of 
Haryana Chief Minister Bhpender Singh Hooda
Dig Vijaya Singh was in Parliament, huge crowd went near to him
in his inimical  smile style -somewhat similar to that of
Karunakaran broad smile- Diggy Raja shook hands with everyone.
Atleast ten to fifteen MPs walked with him from main portico
of parliament building to Central Hall.
Gulam Nabi Azad Union Minister when he entered Lok Sabha
at 1055 hours on Friday- was greeted by almost all Telangana Congress
MPs. Some Telangana Congress MPs touched Gulam nabi feet
inside Lok Sabha. While these MPs were holding huge posters
reminding Sonia Gandhi for telangana as promised on her birthday
two years ago. 

But a contrast meeting of Andhra Congress MPs with Dig Vijaya Singh
inside Parliament, which is interesting. Dr KVP Ramachandra Rao
and Sabbam Hari went rushing to Diggy Raja, while Unndavalli
Aruna Kumar joined this discussion. KVP and Diggy Raja spent
few minutes separately in a corner of Parliament. 
Satyavrt Chaturvedi the Congress spokesman was narrating to
fellow Congress MPs inside Parliament the difficulties he faced in many live TV discussions
to defend UPA2 

In a lighter vein joke to his fellow Congress MP
Satyavrt said.. Thursday P Chidambaram on 2G, Friday SM Krishna on Bellary mining
Monday Kapil Sibal on Facebook and Twitter , Tuesday Anand Sharma on FDI in retail
like this..parliament will have blockade...We have added eleven young spokesmen
who are Union Ministers.. Let them defend such a long list.... 


Assessing Manmohan Singh: He was never a true reformist by instinct

Bibek Debroy Dec 11, 2011, 10.49am IST
Rare is the person who reads Robert Browning now. He wrote a poem titled "The Patriot" and it begins, "It was roses, roses, all the way, /With myrtle mixed in my path like mad." Somewhere down the line, the poem says, "And you see my harvest, what I reap, /This very day, now a year is run."
It has been more than a year now, seven years if one counts from 2004. As prime minister, Manmohan Singh(let's call him MMS) is most likely on his way out, once the Congress figures out the exit policy.
Since clamours for removal have emanated from within the Congress too, we aren't talking about 2014. More like 2012. As PM, the MMS legacy has been the nuclear deal, aborted peace initiatives with Pakistan and part-aborted agreements with Bangladesh. But MMS is an economist. As FM, he is the one who liberalised the economy in 1991 and reminded us about an idea (reforms) whose time has come.
Rao, Not Singh To put it mildly, the economy is in a shambles now. Reforms most likely are on permanent pause. The sound and fury over FDI in retail amounted to nothing. During UPA-I, we had RTI and NREG. The rest was a legacy. During UPA-II, we have Right to Education and may have Right to Food. As a reformer, lauded by the external world and urban India, I doubt MMS will be proud of this legacy.
But should we be surprised? We have conjured up an image of MMS as the original reforming FM. There are several problems with this identification. First, MMS wasn't PV Narasimha Rao's original choice as FM. IG Patel was, though that is neither here nor there. Second, the credit for those reforms should largely go to Rao, though the Congress conveniently chose to ignore this later. Indeed, MMS also distanced himself from Rao, though that too is perhaps neither here nor there, except that it reveals some of MMS' personal attributes. The point is, any FM in 1991 would have had to introduce those reforms. The agenda was known. The blueprint was known.
All of these had been firmed up by the end of 1990. All that remained was for FM to read out the speech. MMS wasn't the engineer or the architect. At best, he was the contractor.
Third, MMS may have been an economist once. But for years and years, he was a laterally inducted bureaucrat. A requisite characteristic of a successful bureaucrat is lack of conviction, economic, political or ideological.
You need to be malleable. And MMS was successful at that. It isn't generally known that the "garibi hatao" slogan was thought of by MMS. Therefore, we have ourselves conjured up this 'father of reforms' image and MMS chose to go along.
Honest, But... Part of the image also concerns honesty. Honesty is a relative expression. I have been severely reprimanded by an MP for calling MPs and politicians dishonest. I have been advised to call them differently honest and there is a grain of truth in that.