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AICC gets overhauled; media cell sees new faces

Last updated on: August 5, 2011 19:52 IST

AICC gets overhauled; media cell sees new faces

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A Correspondent in New Delhi

Chief spokesperson of the Congress party, Janardan Dwivedi, on Friday announced changes made in the All India Congress Committee by Congress President Sonia Gandhi before she went abroad for surgery.

Former Madhya Pradesh Congress President Suresh Pachauri, who has been angling for a berth in the Cabinet, has been appointed as convener of the All India Congress Committee's research and coordination department and its sub-group, while former Union minister Renuka Chowdhary and Rashid Alvi, both from Andhra Pradesh, join the team of party spokespersons.

The major change, however, is in the party's mouthpiece Sandesh because of some embarrassing goof-ups in its recent issues. Sandesh editor Anil Shastri and his aide Pankaj Sharma have been shunted out as chairman and secretary of the Hindi department, while Rajasthan Member of Parliament Dr Girija Vyas has taken over as the new editor.

Union Ministers Salman Khurshid and Jairam Ramesh are now part of the editorial board. Vyas is also chairperson of the Vichar Vibhag.

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Image: Former Madhya Pradesh Congress President Suresh Pachauri

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AICC has been overhauled!

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Renuka Chowdhary replaces Environment Minister Jayanthi Natarajan, while Rashid Alvi has been brought in place of Dr Shakeel Ahmed, an ex-junior home minister from Bihar.

Dr Shakeel Ahmed, a permanent invitee to the Congress Working Committee, however, continues to be in charge of West Bengal, Jharkhand and Andaman and Nicobar Islands.

Nagpur MP Vilas Muttemwar, who was made party general secretary after the Cabinet reshuffle, has been given charge of monitoring the government's flagship programmes, along with Vivek Bansal who will assist him as secretary.

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Image: Former Union minister Renuka Chowdhary

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The research and coordination department that Pachauri heads has high-profile members like general secretaries Digvijay Singh, Ghulam Nabi Azad and Mukul Wasnik, and also Union Ministers Ambika Soni, Pawan Bansal, Anand Sharma and Jairam Ramesh, besides spokespersons Renuka Choudhary and Manish Tewari and Delhi MP Sandeep Dikshit, son of Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit. The small sub-group of the department has Bansal, Jairam Ramesh and Dikshit as members.

Rajya Sabha member Dr Karan Singh is now chairman of the foreign affairs department, with Union minister Anand Sharma as vice chairman and Manish Tewari as secretary.

Major Ved Prakash has been made chairman of the ex-servicemen department with Captain Praveen Davar continuing as its secretary. Achana Dalmia has been made in charge of the grievances cell.

Image: Rajya Sabha member Dr Karan Singh

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