BHOPAL: Bharatiya Janata Party’s state unit president VD Sharma has said he never knew he would ever hold such an important position in the party. Called by the endearing sobriquet ‘Subhankar’ by his party colleagues, Sharma is completing one year in office. Free Press has spoken to him about his work in the past one year. Excerpts:
FP: How do you see your one year in office?
VD: When we work we do not think how much time we have worked. We simply mull over our performances. I follow it in letter and spirit. I’m working the way a good state president should work. I’m discharging my duties.
FP: Did you ever think one day you would become the state party president?
VD: I’ve never thought of it. As I’ve got the responsibility I’ve begun to work. When I was working in Jharkhand I was given the charge of Nehru Yuva Kendra. Then I was appointed as general secretary and given ticket for the Lok Sabha elections. One day I was appointed state party president. Getting a post in the BJP is a system. One has to work according to that.
FP: There are discussions that VD will become the next CM?
VD: In the BJP, nobody knows who will become what; and when and how that will happen. It is the party organisation that decides what one should do. One discharges one’s duty with dedication. I never thought what kind of responsibility I would get.
I’ve a big heart. Though I’m a BJP leader I never nurse any grudge against opposition. Even when I was none in the party I would help the opposition. I always try to bury the hatchet. And I move ahead.Bharatiya Janata Party’s state unit president VD Sharma
FP: Many leaders were opposed to giving you ticket. Now, how you are working with them?
VD: A poem of former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee is my model. Chhote maan se koi bada nahin hota, tute maan se koi khada nahin hota (One cannot grow with a narrow mind; One cannot stand up with a broken heart). I’ve a big heart. Though I’m a BJP leader I never nurse any grudge against opposition. Even when I was none in the party I would help the opposition. I always try to bury the hatchet. And I move ahead.
FP: There are many senior leaders. How do you coordinate with them?
VD: As I’m in my salad days I always take blessings of senior leaders before beginning any work. To communicate with others is the best way of coordination. I take every decision after holding discussions with others. A system works in the BJP. After Kushabhauji and Pyarelalji, Patwaji, Joshiji and Sarangji worked for the party. Now, the team of Shivrajji, Tomarji and Kailashji is working. In our party, a man does not work. A system functions.
FP: When you took over as state president the BJP was in opposition. Did you ever think the party would return to power?
VD: We never thought of it. I became the president of an opposition party. After taking over, I began to think about how to protest against the government’s undemocratic policies. Forming government never came to my mind.
FP: You’ve always been an aggressive student leader. How do you adjust now?
VD: I’ve been an aggressive student leader but always positive. This is the reason why I never thought of opposing anything only for the sake of opposing. Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan are working for the poor. There is no dearth in their efforts. Chouhan is an ideal chief minister. He holds discussions with everyone before taking any decision.
FP: Do you have any problem in working with Scindia?
VD: The Kamal Nath-led government was looting the state and attacking our ideology. The central leadership decided to induct Scindia into the BJP for state’s development. And we’ve accepted the decision. I always tell party workers to take Scindia’s induction in right spirit. They should not be emotional. It has been done to save the state. As the party workers listened to me, we had no problem in winning the by-elections.
FP: You used to raise the issue of corruption in the Congress government. Is nothing happening now?
VD: Action will be taken against those who have tried to loot the state. Nobody shall be spared. The government has launched a drive against the mafia. Everybody is saying that Chouhan has changed this time.
FP: You are elected by people. Now, petrol costs Rs 100 per litre. But you’re keeping mum on such issues.
VD: We also hold talks on issues. The Prime Minister has clearly instructed each party worker to people a listen to their problems. We raise such issues before the government.