Superstar K. Chiranjeevi is taking his Union minister’s role quite seriously. The man rarely smiles at press meets, doing his best imitation of a no-nonsense politician. At heart, though, he still remains the matinee idol. The tourism MoS paid a surprise visit recently to the sets of Zanjeer in Ramoji Film City. The Big B film remake stars Priyanka Chopra and Chiru’s son Ram Charan Tej. As news spread of his presence, fans from all over were lining up for the actor’s autograph. Shooting came to a standstill as the man obliged, and he had a broad smile on his face doing it too. Missing those starry, starry days, Chiru?
Akhilesh isn’t the only male offspring of Mulayam Singh Yadav. There’s also Prateek Yadav, the second son by second wife Sadhna. The man has political hopes and ambitions too but isn’t getting much liftoff these days. But hope springs eternal. After the SP announced a second list of candidates for 2014 in Uttar Pradesh, a group of Prateek supporters staged a day-long protest at the party HQ in Lucknow. They were demanding a ticket for Prateek from Azamgarh. But it seems the whole effort was a waste. No one, not even from the family, bothered to give them a listen. Perhaps Mulayam has it all worked out in his head. Elder son will be Netaji redux in the CM’s chair while Prateek (a wrestler like his father) will be the field general. Meanwhile, Mulayam continues to put the scare into the UPA regime, keeping in line with his dream of being a national player, maybe even wrestle the PM’s post for himself.
West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee was delivering a speech about the TMC’s achievements at Chandannagar, on the outskirts of Calcutta, when a huge monkey appeared out of nowhere and leaped onto the stage. Didi and the monkey eyed each other for a few moments before the monkey lost interest and leapt away. Taken aback initially, Mamata quickly recovered, “Ore baba, where did this come from?” Then she collected herself and declared the simian to be “so beautiful”. The encounter with our nearest mammalian relatives did not go without comment from our Bong Bolsheviks. Obviously unlikely to let an opportunity like this slip, at the CPI(M) headquarters they were cracking up at how “she’s turning everyone into a monkey”.
Top officials in the UP government, including CM Akhilesh Yadav, are still to get their November salaries. It ought to have been credited on December 1 but a striking accounts department has held it back. And they needn’t expect it before the 10th, the babus have made it known. What a way to strike back!
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