The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Koda’s flight to fight fire

Ranchi, April 11: Did you ask Vijendra Goyal, who' Well, neither the chief minister’s office nor the department of cabinet coordination had any clue this evening about Goyal’s identity or background.

But that did not prevent the state government from notifying him as the special representative of Jharkhand in New Delhi. Goyal, apparently a resident of New Delhi, will enjoy the status of a minister of state.

Senior RJD leader in the state, Girinath Singh, who is a prominent UPA leader in the state, cannot remember who Goyal is and even Congress leaders were busy working the telephone to glean some facts about him.

Goyal will replace another Delhi resident, R.N. Tiwary, who had been appointed by the previous NDA government to the “redundant post”, primarily because Tiwary claimed to be the resident astrologer for BJP leader L.K. Advani.

Goyal, suggested the Congress grapevine, must be a Haryanvi nominated by Ahmed Patel, political secretary to Sonia Gandhi.

The notification was cleared by chief minister Madhu Koda today before he took the evening flight to New Delhi. He also cleared the file appointing retired chief secretary M.K. Mandal the next state election commissioner.

While the Koda camp claimed his visit is meant to clear appointments to boards and corporations, rival camps remained abuzz with reports of renewed dissidence activities, spearheaded by two ministers, Anosh Ekka and Kamlesh Singh, both of whom are also camping in Delhi.

Congress circles also claimed that the high command is cut up with Koda for his reluctance to appoint P.P. Sharma the chief secretary, and his proximity to RSS leaders in the state.

But Ekka told The Telegraph from New Delhi that he had overstayed there because he was finding it difficult to find a suitable Hindi-medium school for his daughter.

Kamlesh Singh, in turn, claimed that he was in Delhi for the medical treatment of his mother.

While denying that he is spearheading any anti-Koda campaign, Ekka significantly mentioned that Kamlesh Singh was their “leader” and any comment on the political situation would be made by him.

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