HRD minister Ramesh Pokhriyal. | ANI Photos
HRD minister Ramesh Pokhriyal 'Nishank' | ANI
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‘Who is Sri Aurobindo?’ asks HRD minister Pokhriyal in meeting

Union Human Resource Development Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank had better brush up his knowledge of the history and intellectual tradition of West Bengal, a state that figures prominently in the BJP’s scheme of things. At a meeting with ministry officials on Auroville Foundation earlier this month, Nishank caught everyone by surprise when he asked, “But who is Sri Aurobindo?”

The HRD minister’s ignorance about the philosopher, yogi, spiritual leader and poet from Bengal brought smiles to the officials present, but the BJP may not be too amused.

Modi ministers now have a tough task at hand — search for a house

MPs and ministers in the Modi government are all desperately looking for a house to live in. The problem is the existing occupants haven’t yet vacated their bungalows but the hunt by new MPs and ministers has begun. Many staff members of first-time ministers are out on recces. The staff of a central minister even turned up at 22, Gurudwara Rakabganj Road, which has already been allotted to BJP Rajya Sabha MP and media department head, Anil Baluni.

The House Committee that deals with residential accommodation of parliamentarians, however, is yet to be constituted. C.R. Patil, MP from Gujarat, is said to be in the reckoning for the post of chairman of the committee. House-hunters are queuing up at his residence. Whether Patil heads the panel or not, he already has a stack of applications.

These UP BJP MPs don’t have much reason to celebrate Lok Sabha victory

Winning a Lok Sabha election is a matter of pride and cause for big celebrations for politicians but there are a few in this Lok Sabha who aren’t really celebrating their victories. Rita Bahuguna Joshi who won from Allahabad, S.P. Baghel from Agra, and Satyadev Pachauri from Kanpur have reasons to feel disempowered by their election to the Lok Sabha.

Joshi was tourism and women development minister in Yogi Adityanath’s cabinet in Uttar Pradesh; Baghel had the responsibility of animal husbandry; and Pachauri was small industry minister. They had to give up their ministries to contest the Lok Sabha. Given their administrative experience, they were hoping to be accommodated in PM Narendra Modi’s council of ministers but that was not to be.

(Contributors: D.K. Singh and Shanker Arnimesh)

Also read: Has Yogi govt failed to keep its promise of cleaning up law & order in Uttar Pradesh?


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