Mamata in Catch-22
Despite the fact that Mamata Banerjee-led Trinamool Congress (TC) is a partner in the United Progressive Alliance at centre, the big brother Congress is not very comfortable with TC. The reason is “fickle” attitude of Mamata Banerjee. On the other hand, Mamata has her own grouse too against the Congress and the government, as reports appear that Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Bengal Chief Minister Buddhadev Bhattacharya have developed “good friendship”. The recent example of this newly developed friendship is the allocation of a nuclear plant to West Bengal by the Centre government. Mamata expressed her displeasure over this friendship and also announced the agitation against this project. According to sources, the PM’s visit to Bengal was also mired in controversy as Mamata raised her objection. She feels the Congress still give weightage to its former ally CPM. On the other hand, the Congress also is in mood to flatter Mamata and is planning for future in case Mamata “quits” UPA. Then they can seek support from CPM-led Left parties. The game is on and on the eve of West Bengal Assembly elections it can be played in open.
In the new-evolving international diplomatic order, it seems that “actress diplomacy” has become the new mantra for the South Block mandarins. Recently, film actress Konkona Sen Sharma was invited to the dinner hosted in honour of Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in New Delhi. Mrs Hasina enquired about Konkona’s mother Aparna Sen. She also enquired about film actress Munmun Sen and her mother Suchitra Sen, who is also an actress, and is now bed ridden. Prior to Konkona, another film actress Deepika Padukone was the guest at a dinner hosted by the PM Dr Manmohan Singh in honour of Japanese PM. At the dinner, along with Ms Padukone, Mr LK Advani, leader of BJP Parliamentary Party was also present. According to the whispers in the corridors of South Block, it seems that the actress factor works perfectly as the visiting dignitaries get “satisfied” with this arrangement. Now the Indian diplomats are planning to invite more film actresses to such dinners. So, more actresses should be ready to have the dinner at Rashtrapati Bhavan or at Prime Minister’s residence.
Politics over George Fernandes
Fiery leader of 70s, 80s, and 90s, George Fernandes appears to have now become the pawn of politics of his own party! Yes we are talking about the George Fernandes who fought during infamous Emergency with ‘dynamite’ and became the defence minister during the NDA government led by Atal Behari Vajpayee. At present he is the Rajya Sabha Member from Bihar but for about last four years he has not been keeping well. He has no knowledge as to what is happening around him. When he was active his associate Jaya Jaitely was also active with him and his wife has not been staying with him for last more than 30 years. They were separated but not divorced. Politically George and Nitish Kumar (CM, Bihar ) are in opposite camps. Now in the absence of activeness of George, Nitish Kumar’s writ is running large in JD(U). Since Jaya Jaitely was with George, so she has also become the persona non grata for Nitish. Recently George’s wife Leila Kabir lodged a complained to the police that some persons are trying to misuse George’s condition. Her target reportedly was Jaya Jaitely. It seems that Nitish is ‘patronising’ George’s estrange wife against Jaya. In this process, the sympathy for George is increasing. But for what import?