It seems the Marxist power-couple Prakash-Brinda Karat has been conferred the status of VVIP guest both by the Congress and the communists. Recently Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh invited the power-couple for lunch. The PM invited them on the instructions of 10, Janpath. The Speaker Somnath Chatterjee, arranged a party to introduce Prakash Karat to UPA partners. The increasing clout of the couple can be gauged by the fact that the once ubiquitous Sitaram Yechuri is now rarely seen.
Red eye for EC
Prakash Karat criticised the EC on the recent controversy over Lalu. But his latest remarks are aimed at the Assembly elections slated to be held in Kerala and West Bengal where the party has to rig scientifically so that the EC would not lash its fiery tongue on the communists. Already the CPI had lost its national status.
Split wide open
The Orissa Pradesh Congress Committee recently elected Jayadev Jena as its president. But senior Congress leaders like former Railway Minister K.C. Lenka, Lalatendu Mahapatra and all the anti-Naveen leaders who had joined the Congress, known as Biju Congress, were conspicuous by their absence at the time of election. However, in the evening, some of the ?Biju Congress? leaders, including former Union Minister Srikant Jena were present to congratulate the new president. After losing all the by-elections in the state, the Congress leaders are now engaged in a blame game for the downfall of the party. Some dissident leaders of the state Congress are now camping at Orissa Bhawan in Delhi to meet the party high command in vain. Some Congress leaders openly criticise the new state Congress president for having no credibility and lacking leadership skills desired for uniting the party.
Only Muslim CM
Paswan met Sonia Gandhi to offer the option that there should be a Muslim candidate for the post of CM from the Congress with the support of LJP and claimed that the RJD would support it with a minor role. Paswan, whose party is under a dark cloud of vertical split, is stressing on the fact that only a Muslim CM is acceptable to him. Another option that is being discussed by Paswan rivals is that there should be candidate for the post of CM from JD(U) who would be supported by the LJP and the Congress.