Modi Govt appoints Arnab Goswami in NMML, retains #MeToo accused M J Akbar
New Delhi: The Centre has appointed journalist Arnab Goswami, former Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar, BJP MP Vinay Sahasrabuddhe and IGNCA chairman Ram Bahadur Rai as members of the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library Society, replacing four members who had opposed the move to build a museum for all prime ministers at the Teen Murti Estate. Former Union Minister M J Akbar, who resigned from the Cabinet on October 17 in the wake of allegations of sexual harassment levelled by several women journalists, however, continues to be the vice-chairman of the NMML Executive Council.
According to a notification on October 29, the culture ministry replaced economist Nitin Desai, professor Udayan Mishra and former bureaucrat BP Singh. Another member Pratap Bhanu Mehta had resigned in 2016 over the appointment of Shakti Sinha as NMML director. The newly appointed members will serve until April 25, 2020, the order said. Pratap Bhanu Mehta, BP Singh and Udayan Mishra, who have been replaced, had openly spoken against the decision to set up the museum for PMs at the complex, sources said. "Their tenures have not ended. They have been replaced," said NMML director Shakti Sinha.
Asked about the reason behind the appointments, Sinha said they will help meet the goal to develop NMML into a centre of research as envisioned by the present government. "This is part of a bigger plan to make NMML a centre of research. Ram Bahadur Rai has been commenting on the Indian political scene for the last 50 years. He personally knew some of the PMs," Sinha said.