New Ministry, Check. Now A Break: Arvind Kejriwal Off On Vipassana Course

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal will head to Maharashtra's Igatpuri for a 10-day Vipassana course starting Sunday.

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New Ministry, Check. Now A Break: Arvind Kejriwal Off On Vipassana Course

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal is known to take frequent Vipassana breaks.

New Delhi:  Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, who took over his first portfolio since the party came to power in Delhi two years ago, will take a 10-day meditation break starting Sunday. His destination is Igatpuri - a picturesque hill station in Maharashtra's Nashik -- where he plans to pursue another course in Vipassana, an ancient Buddhist meditation technique which mandates complete silence.

The 47-year-old leader has been learning Vipassana for a while. He says meditation provides him with the strength to deal with stressful situations.

His last meditation course was in 2016, at Dharamkot in Himachal Pradesh, ahead of a round of assembly elections in five states. His Aam Aadmi Party, which was a serious contender in Punjab and Goa, had lost.

Three years ago, Mr Kejriwal had gone for another Vipassana session following the intensive campaigning for the Lok Sabha elections. A year later, the Aam Aadmi Party won Delhi with a sweeping mandate in February 2015. The next year in December, he had gone for a 10-day visit to Bangalore to treat his chronic cough, for which he had undergone a surgery three months before.  

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This morning - a day after Prime Minister's mega reshuffle at the centre - the Delhi Chief Minister had done a mini rejig in his cabinet. He himself had taken over the water ministry, which had been handed over to Rajendra Pal Gautam after rebel minister Kapil Mishra was removed. Sources said he was "unhappy" with the performance of Mr Gautam.

The Chief Minister is also facing two defamation cases filed by Union finance minister Arun Jaitley, who has sought damages of 20 crore. This morning, Mr Kejriwal was fined Rs 5,000 by the Delhi High Court for delay in filing his reply to the second defamation case - which came after Mr Kejriwal's lawyer Ram Jethmalani used a slur during the cross-examination of Mr Jaitley. Mr Jethmalani, who has since been removed, has insisted that the use of the slur had been authorized by Mr Kejriwal.

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