'Bring back Rahul' campaign set to reach a crescendo in the coming weeks

Waiting for Rahul

A campaign to demand the return of Rahul Gandhi as Congress president has started in the party. First off the blocks is the party’s recently retired Rajya Sabha member Husain Dalwai. On Wednesday, Dalwai sent a letter to Congress interim President Sonia Gandhi and others, saying Rahul should be brought back as party chief as soon as possible. He said Rahul had exhibited exemplary leadership in dealing with the pandemic and highlighting the challenges posed by it, the subsequent migrant crisis, and economic distress. Dalwai said only Rahul had asked tough questions to the government, including many on the country's relations with China. Dalwai is a 77-year-old two-term Rajya Sabha MP from Maharashtra and a trade unionist. With Sonia indicating that she does not want to continue in the current job for long, the "bring back Rahul" campaign is set to reach a crescendo in the coming weeks.

United States of China?

They say love knows no boundaries. It seems hate too. If it was a bunch of BJP workers in West Bengal who mistook North Korean leader Kim Jong-un for Chinese premier Xi Jinping last week, there was another set of protesters in the state, which failed to recognise an entire country. A picture surfaced on social media that showed protesters marching with a map, voicing their outrage against China for the Galwan valley episode. Unfortunately, the map depicted the United States and not the unfriendly neighbour against whom they were venting their anger. The epicentre this time was the state's capital, Kolkata. Some Left leaders from the state insinuated that this bunch also belonged to the BJP but with only still images available and no party flags visible, the claim could not be verified.

Integration plan

A committee set up to study the “functional integration” of the Rajya Sabha and Lok Sabha television channels has recommended setting up of a ‘Sansad TV’. The two channels would continue to live telecast proceedings of the two Houses separately, but common content would be telecast under the auspices of the Sansad TV. Set up in 2006 and 2011 respectively, the LSTV and RSTV have separate managements. The LSTV is headed by the Lok Sabha Speaker and RSTV by the Rajya Sabha Chairman. The committee under senior journalist A Surya Prakash has recommended that apart from parliamentary proceedings, the two channels should telecast common content, with the LSTV telecasting programmes in Hindi, and RSTV in English. The integration would also save money as the committee has asked the RSTV to vacate its office at Talkatora Stadium Annexe, for which it pays a huge rent, and move into the space available with the LSTV in Parliament House and at a Mahadev Road bungalow.

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