Now, the jilted lover is allegedly wreaking his revenge, if you believe the story bureaucrats relate with some relish.
How to be a talking head
Every now and then, the Bharatiya Janata Party holds internal workshops for handpicked leaders from various state units to teach them how to handle the media.
Media-savvy leaders such as Sushma Swaraj, Arun Jaitley, Pramod Mahajan and Mukhtaar Abbas Naqvi address the 'class' of 50-odd party spokesmen from the state units. The initial spadework is done by journalists-turned-politicians Dinanath Mishra and Balbir Punj.
At the recent media relations tutorial at the party's Ashoka Road headquarters, Swaraj, Jaitley and a couple of other high-profile leaders taught their 'students' the finer points of the art of handling the media.
There were some red faces when someone asked how to respond to a needling question the answer to which, you knew, was bound to prove embarrassing to the party.
It was left to the legal eagle, Jaitley, to come up with a clever response: "It is not always necessary to answer every question. You skirt around by a diversionary 'will let you know later' or 'let me check on that' or simply laugh it off and ask the next fellow to put his question."
Simple PM, simple food
Culinary tastes of the Prime Minister's Office seem to have changed with the change of regime.
When Atal Bihari Vajpayee was in the saddle, catering at official and semi-official gatherings at the sprawling 7, Race Course Road complex was a freewheeling affair, with five star hotels from the Taj and Maurya to Raddison and Hyatt Regency invariably scoring over the State-owned Ashoka.
But things reverted back to the staid Ashoka Hotel, the crown in the faltering Indian Tourism Development Corporation empire, once Manmohan Singh moved in.
Since he is a man of simple tastes and frugal habits, Dr Singh is not overly concerned as to who caters for his numerous guests when the call of duty demands that he host dinners and lunches for them.
Inevitably, he falls back on the safe and uncontroversial Ashoka -- a politically correct decision that might endear him to the Marxists for whom privatisation is a swear word. Of course, outside West Bengal, where they are struggling to sell off the terminally ill Great Eastern Hotel after incurring huge losses for several decades.
Come back, dear babus
The prime minister seems to think that enforcing a modicum of discipline in the bureaucracy is a worthwhile endeavour.
The latest from the prime minister -- who has issued more than three dozen circulars regarding personnel matters in the last one year -- is the edict that all government officers working for 15 or more years in various multilateral institutions must return or resign from their parent cadres.
Given that a five-year stint in the UN entitles one to a handsome lifelong pension, not many would mind coming back -- to reclaim due seniority in their respective cadres.
Among them is Ramu Damodaran, the IFS officer who was the all-powerful private secretary to the late P V Narasimha Rao when Rao was foreign minister and prime minister.
All these years, Damodaran had been at the UN headquarters in New York. He is set to return to the ministry of external affairs shortly. So are quite a few others.
Illustrations: Uttam Ghosh