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On first birthday, PM will review Project Tiger
Nistula Hebbar in New Delhi |
May 16, 2005 19:37 IST
The completion of one year in the government by the United Progressive Alliance has not meant any grand celebrations for Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
The prime minister will, after attending a dinner hosted by UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi on May 22, keep his date with the big cats of the jungle.
Singh will be holding a review meeting of Project Tiger in the tiger reserve of Sariska on May 23, and will seek an update on the work of the committee set up to look into the dwindling tiger population in this and other reserves.
External link: Project Tiger
According to sources in the Prime Minister's Office, Singh has been following the issue closely, including the Central Bureau of Investigation probe into the activities of master poacher Sansar Chand, who is said to have poached over a 100 big cats last year alone.
The prime minister's interest in the matter has already brought him into conflict with Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje of the Bharatiya Janata Party.
Raje feels it is unfair to single out her state's record in wildlife conservation.
Meanwhile, assumptions that the end of the Budget session may see a Cabinet reshuffle seem to be dying down.
"President APJ Abdul Kalam will be leaving for a tour of Europe on May 22, and will be away for the next two weeks, which is why it seems highly unlikely that the reshuffle will take place," said a PMO official.
In the week between the end of the Budget session and the President's departure are a slew of meetings of the Congress with regard to its own internal elections. A Congress Working Committee meeting was held today.
A meeting of the Left and all other constituents of the UPA government is to be held on May 18, which leaves very little time for the reshuffle.
"In any case, there will be some changes affected in the Congress hierarchy and some people will be joining the government after the party elections, therefore an immediate reshuffle appears highly unlikely," said a party source.
The Cabinet reshuffle has long been speculated upon and it seems destined to remain in the domain of speculation for some time to come.