Forty-five minutes of sleep is all that your body needs, if Union minister and Bharatiya Janata Party candidate from Delhi’s Chandni Chowk constituency, Harsh Vardhan (pictured), is to be believed. However, this prescription from the minister, who is also a doctor, is not without a rider. During a press conference held in the capital on Monday, he said if one was “able to put one’s conscious and sub-conscious mind to sleep through meditation and other practices for a long time... 45 minutes of sleep is sufficient.” He was talking about his own schedule during the campaign season — he said he was sleeping for three-four hours only every day. His latest views on sleep patterns may or may not be backed by research but this is not the first time Vardhan has aired views that challenge conventional wisdom. Last year, he had controversially said that the late physicist Stephen Hawking had once remarked that the Vedas might have a theory superior to Albert Einstein's iconic equation, E=mc2, but could not attribute the source.
‘Sadhvi’ Swara Bhaskar?
So is she prepping for a political debut? Actress Swara Bhaskar, who was in Bhopal on Monday, courted controversy with her remarks about Bharatiya Janata Party candidate Pragya Singh Thakur. Bhaskar, who was in the city to attend an event hosted by an NGO, called her a "Hindu terror suspect". "I will also put on a bhagwa (saffron) sari and urge everyone to call me ‘sadhvi’ Swara Bhaskar. Is that possible?” Though not in active politics, Bhaskar has been a vocal critic of the government and has attacked trolls for criticising her on Twitter over her repeated criticism of the government. In April, she had campaigned for the Communist Party of India’s Begusarai candidate Kanhaiya Kumar and said the country needed leaders like him.
IT cell for Kishor
Much like the information technology cell he had helped set up for the Bharatiya Janata Party five years ago, Janata Dal (United) National Vice-President Prashant Kishor is working behind the scenes to set up another such unit to bolster his image as a bankable leader in Bihar and nearby states. To this end, Kishor is learnt to have planned a “yatra” which will include politically active and enthusiastic student leaders from the grassroots. Preference will be given to students who do not belong to a political family. These students will be groomed to become future leaders in the party. Scholarship along these lines is also being considered.