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Dilli Gupshup: Whispers from the Capital

Last updated on: April 9, 2012 12:50 IST

Dilli Gupshup: Will Raj Babbar do what Rahul Gandhi couldn't?



Raj Babbar to the Congress's rescue?

Adarsh scam nets two more Maharashtra CMs...

Jairam Ramesh ki mazaak-masti...

All this, and more, in Dilli Gupshup.

A little bird whispers that actor-turned politician Raj Babbar may head the Congress party in Uttar Pradesh.

Rahul Gandhi, apparently, is not discouraged after the drubbing the Congress received in the recent assembly polls. He is looking for a suitable candidate to revive the party in UP.

If Babbar accepts the challenge, he will earn the gratitude of many leaders in the Congress.

None of them, you see, want the tough job.

And that includes Union Ministers Beni Prasad Verma, Salman Khurshid, Sriprakash Jaiswal, R P N Singh and Jitin Prasada.

A section in the Congress believe Babbar's dramatic skills and star appeal make him the right man for the job.

Will he accept the post?

Will he work hard enough?

Please click NEXT to read more Gupshup...

Image: Will Raj Babbar come to Rahul Gandhi's rescue?
Photographs: Rahul Gandhi: Babu/Reuters; Raj Babbar: Athar Hussain/Reuters


Cabinet seat ka sawaal hai

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Now that she's back in Parliament (she won a Rajya Sabha seat, nearly three years after losing the Lok Sabha election), the formidable Renuka Chowdhury has set herself a new target.

A ministerial berth.

The vocal lady from Andhra Pradesh is lobbying hard even as her colleagues in the Congress media department squirm uneasily.

It's an open secret that Congress media department head Janardhan Dwivedi and spokesmen Manish Tiwari, Abhishek Manu Singhvi and Shakeel Ahmad have exactly the same ambition.

Nahi samjhe? Arre baba, all of them are itching to get into the Manmohan Singh government as well.

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Image: Rajya Sabha MP Renuka Chowdhury has a new target
Photographs: Tanushree Punwani/Reuters

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Too much Adarsh for Maharashtra CMs?

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Vilasrao Deshmukh's past is catching up with him.

Now that the Supreme Court has passed critical remarks against him for misuse of power when he was Maharashtra's chief minister, pressure is mounting on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to sack the Union minister for science, technology and earth sciences.

But the PM is reluctant to take a decision just yet.

Dr Singh, in fact, is grappling with sensational findings in the infamous Adarsh Cooperative Housing Society scam.

Deshmukh's name figures in that controversy as well, along with another Union minister, Sushil Kumar Shinde, also a former state CM.

Adarsh, alleges one little bird in Mumbai, may net two more former Maharashtra mukhya mantris: Ashok Chavan and Shivajirao Patil Nilangekar. Dunno if that will happen just yet.

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Image: Will Dr Singh sack Vilasrao Deshmukh, right?
Photographs: Arko Datta/Reuters

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Jairam Ramesh ki mazaak-masti

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Jairam Ramesh, we all know, is a man of many interests.

The Union rural development minister was was spotted at a lecture about the artwork Dr Homi Bhabha, the father of India's nuclear programme, had bought for the Department of Atomic Energy.

Jawaharlal Nehru, who was very fond of Dr Bhabha, apparently allowed the nuclear nabob to buy art using government funds.

At the end of the lecture, Jairam asked questions that revealed the depth of his understanding about art.

The minister -- who maintains perhaps the most elegant ministerial office in the current government -- also wryly pointed out that Dr Bhabha could buy art from anywhere in the world because there was no CAG breathing down his neck in his time :)))).

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Image: The minister of many interests
Photographs: Henry Romero/Reuters

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For once, Arun Jaitley is stumped!

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The defamation row between Arun Jaitley and Anshuman Mishra has taken a curious turn.

Mishra, the controversial NRI whom the BJP dropped as its Rajya Sabha candidate from Jharkhand, apparently wants to patch up with Jaitley.

In exchange, Mishra wants something rather unusual -- he wants the senior BJP leader to drop a reference to Mishra's first meeting with Jaitley.

BJP circles are intrigued by Mishra's peculiar insistence.

Apparently, Jaitley first met Mishra at the Raj Bhavan in Bengaluru.

Mishra, it is whispered, wants to gloss over his alleged proximity to Karnataka Governor and former Congressman Hansraj Bhardwaj.

Image: Will Arun Jaitley and Anshuman Mishra wave the peace flag?
Photographs: Arun Jaitley, left: Paresh Gandh/

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