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Virendra Kapoor | March 29, 2003
Diplomat-turned-politician Natwar Singh will think twice before he tangles with Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee again.
Adept at antagonizing people with his know-it-all attitude, the Congress leader chided Vajpayee on his anti-war stand against America.
When the prime minister rose to answer queries in Parliament, he pointedly referred to the former IFS officer, barely hiding his disdain.
After answering the �clarification' Singh sought, Vajpayee reminded him he was a junior official 'somewhere in Africa' when he visited that country as foreign minister in the Morarji Desai government .
For most people, Vajpayee's message could have been unmistakable. But Singh being Singh didn't get it.
A few days later at an all-party meeting convened by the prime minister on the Iraq war, he again took on Vajpayee.
For a while, the prime minister let him talk. But when Singh claimed the government's stand that no outside force has the right to change by force a government in another country, Vajpayee let him have it.
He began slowly, recounting the foreign policy blunders committed by successive Congress regimes -- which went on for quite some time -- and concluded by telling Singh pointblank he had nothing to learn from him, so would he mind shutting up?
Singh shut up all right.
The return of Dua
Remember H K Dua?
The journalist turned diplomat, who is now India's ambassador to Denmark, will return home at the end of his tenure shortly.
And he has managed himself a job, too. As editor of The Tribune, the daily headquartered in Chandigarh.
Dua will replace Hari Jaisingh whose term ends later this month.
Among those in the running are two glib journalists and a Pune-based industrialist allegedly close to the Maharashtra chief minister.
Illustration: Uttam Ghosh