A poster at a Bharatiya Janata Party rally sparked a row in Indore on Tuesday. In the poster, the face of West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was superimposed on the face of a leopard. As if that was not enough, the poster showed a smirking BJP General Secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya grabbing the leopard by its throat. The poster went viral on social media and was widely criticised by wildlife activists, among many others. It created such an uproar that the police had to intervene and force the organisers to cover the morphed picture. In the recent Lok Sabha polls, the BJP achieved stunning success in West Bengal, where Vijayvargiya was in charge of the party’s operations.
The Congress planned to launch a padyatra in Maharashtra on June 10 to prepare for the Assembly polls in the state. The elections to the Maharashtra Assembly, along with those in Jharkhand and Haryana, are expected by October. The padyatra was aimed at reviving the party's cadre strength.
The event now stands cancelled. Sources in the Congress say the state unit is demoralised and infighting has escalated after the Lok Sabha results. The Congress-Nationalist Congress Party alliance appears to be on the rocks, while the Prakash Ambedkar-led Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi has spurned all efforts for an alliance. The Swabhimani Paksha's Raju Shetti has also had a rethink about aligning with the Congress-NCP. “Looks like it's a walkover for the BJP months before the elections,” a Congress source said.
Jamiat Ulema-e-Hind General Secretary Moulana Mahmood Madani on Monday hosted an Eid Milan dinner in Delhi. Several top politicians attended the dinner. The highlight of the evening was that National Security Advisor Ajit Kumar Doval (pictured) and Congress leader and party Treasurer Ahmed Patel sitting at the same table. The two chatted through the evening. Doval has recently been given the rank of cabinet minister. He was director, Intelligence Bureau, during the Congress-led UPA years.