Tuesday, October 29, 2002, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Brajesh emerges unscathed
Rajeev Sharma
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, October 28
Prime Minister’s Principal Secretary and National Security Advisor, Mr Brajesh Mishra, will continue to occupy both his key posts.

Arguably the most powerful bureaucrat in the country, Mr Mishra continues to be Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee’s favourite and Mr Vajpayee is in no mood to be dictated by a section of the Sangh Parivar that has been demanding Mr Mishra’s ouster, well-placed sources here said today.

This realisation seems to have dawned upon the Sangh Parivar leaders which is evident from the fact that at the October 25 dinner meeting of RSS leaders with the Prime Minister at PM’s residence the issue was not even raised.

Mr Mishra has been under fire from the RSS and VHP for quite a few months, particularly since VHP’s Shilaadaan in Ayodhya in March this year.

The VHP leader, Mr Ashok Singhal, who has also been a RSS Pracharak, has been in the forefront of Brajesh Mishra-baiting and has been demanding that the Prime Minister remove him as his Principal Secretary.

Interestingly, while the Vajpayee government has implemented most recommendations of the Kargil Review Committee which submitted its report in early 2000, it continues to ignore an important recommendation of the KRC: that the two powerful posts of Principal Secretary to PM and National Security Adviser should not be held by the same person.

Sources pointed out that the security and intelligence establishment of the country is strictly in favour of both these key posts being manned by one person.

They argue that for the sake of secrecy, immediate implementation of the government’s policies and national security interests the posts of Principal Secretary to PM and National Security Adviser should be held by one person only.

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