Ever since it was set up in 2004, the National Advisory Council, has existed in an uneasy equation with the Government. Some saw it as instrumental in goading the Government to embrace an inclusive agenda, others as a group of activists whose suggestions - even those bordering on the unrealistic - were only tolerated because they came with the backing of Sonia Gandhi. The dropping of 3 members of the NAC has brought these questions to the forefront: is it a sign of the new found assertiveness by a Prime Minister and his team, irked by the NAC's constant prodding? Or a bellwether to changing power dynamics in the Congress? Or is it the playing out of more deeper ideological conflicts within the Government?