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Capital Buzz/Virendra Kapoor

Into the grave you go...

The grave was ready, the priest had had his say. Now all that Congress president Sitaram Kesri and Prime Minister Inder Kumar Gujral had to do was give the two coffins, balanced precariously on the edge, that teeny-weeny push...

An exercise for which Kesri was just rolling up his kurta sleeves (while Gujral nodded his head approvingly) when the Delhi high court decided to step in.

Do a DNA match on the body in coffin number two, it ordered on Friday, see if it really belongs to the Foreign Contribution Regulation Act.

Now the doctors are on the job. The twosome have jumped back into the shadows and are acting as if nothing happened.

Burial? What burial? Whose? We never even went to the cemetery!

Fortunately for Kesri, the first coffin, containing the gruesome remains of the Dr Tanwar murder case (Tanwar was Kesri's personal physician), remains tightly lidded.

If you remember, it was to keep these skeletons buried that Kesri brought H D Deve Gowda crashing, just days before the government was to move against him.

After which he made Gujral the king. And Gujral, being the true gentleman he is, is all ready to pay back his debt.

Rivals and enemies

When Deve Gowda gets excited, he talks loudly. And when he talks loudly, you can hear him right up to Karnataka.

Last week, Deve Gowda got excited again. The function was the wedding reception of former Central Bureau of Investigation director Joginder Singh's daughter. The function was attended by heavy, medium and light-weighted politicians, many cops, some bureaucrats and a group of journalists.

The humble farmer's excitement stemmed from Krishna Kant's choice as the Congress-UF vice-presidential candidate.

"We were hijacked," Deve Gowda told Surjit Singh Barnala. "We wanted you as the candidate. Even M Karunanidhi made a forceful plea for you. But what to do?"

Barnala made an unrecognisable sound and looked suitably sad. "They wanted me out of the process. Chandrababu Naidu suggested we leave the selection to Gujral and Harkishen Singh Surjeet. But Maran (the Union industries minister) insisted Naidu should be there. So the three conspirators chose Krishna Kant," Deve Gowda said. "Your enemy is not Krishna Kant but Kesri and Naidu..."

In another corner, meanwhile, yet another touching scene was being enacted. Former Punjab police chief K P S Gill, with a paternal hand on Singh's shoulders, could be heard saying: "Don't worry, I will speak to Surjeet on your behalf. We will find you a better posting..."

Singh was on the verge of tears.

In the name of security

Former Supreme Court chief justice A M Ahmadi is extremely busy these days.

He is arguing a case, you see, and this one takes some arguing.

Ahmadi's case is that he needs a house. Renting a house in Delhi, the good justice has now found out, is not quite easy on one's pocket. So he decided to acquire a government bunglow for himself.

But how to go about it? The former chief justice ponders over the problem for a while and...

Eureka! Wasn't he an important personality? Didn't he incur the wrath of all those who disliked his verdicts? Of course, he did. And so, many were out there, planning unpleasant things for him.

Yep, security! He needed security desperately! And he couldn't have security -- not real security -- unless he was living in a government bungalow!

So off Ahmadi went, with his case to the UF politicians. But they, unfortunately for him, had a country to run; they could give him only half their ear.

So now, Ahmadi is after senior law ministry officials. A 'modest government bungalow', that's all he wants...

Pay the piper, call the tune

It is a no-holds-barred fight for the Star TV bosses.

Their desperation is against the information and broadcasting ministry's decision to ban Direct To Home TV in the country. Unless they get around this decision, the Star bosses know, they will be hard put to justify their vulgar pay packets from Rupert Murdoch's media empire.

So what do the clever guys do? Well, they rope in the Capital's most influential lot, yes journalists, to do their lobbying for them!

Thus, now you find the scribes who earn their butter from the Star's commissioned programmes running hurly-burly in, out and around the I&B ministry. Print journalists who moonlight for the Star are also chipping in with some motivated campaigns.

Many politicians too are converting to the Star cause. The latest to pick up the DTH cudgel, we hear, is Congress leader Pranab Mukherjee who wrote to the prime minister's office, making a not-so-poignant case for the Star. And all this, thanks to certain hard-lobbying journalists!

Shame on them, sham scribes!

Capital Buzz

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