Sunil Deodhar being described as architect of party’s victory
Mumbai : The Bharatiya Janata Party’s spectacular sweep in Tripura has been possible due to the collective efforts of many leaders and countless workers and supporters. But one man who stands out from them is Sunil Deodhar, a Maharashtrian and chief of ‘My Home India’ and Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) associated with Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). His meticulous planning, untiring efforts, political savvy and eye for detail has contributed to this victory.
For four decades, Tripura was ruled by Communist Party of India (Marxist). When the result of the state assembly came in, it shocked everyone since Chief Minister Manik Sarkar is appreciated even by his political opponent for his simple living. The BJP has won 23 seats on its own in the 60-member House and bagged 42.8 per cent votes. Five year back, BJP had not a single MLA and its vote share was just 1.54 per cent.
“Sunil Deodhar emerged as powerful kingmaker and has played a crucial role in the victory of BJP,” said a RSS office-bearer who didn’t want to be named. He added, “Deodhar is working in North-East for over past 15 years. He joined RSS in 1985 and was made ‘prabhari’ (incharge) of Tripura by BJP president Amit Shah in November 2014. He had given responsibility to make the BJP powerful force in Tripura.”
“In the run-up to the 2014 assembly polls in Maharashtra, I was to be put in-charge of the campaign for 32 seats there. Amit Shah had become the party president and when he got to know of this after landing in Mumbai, he said I should be sent to Palghar that was being represented by the CPI (M). I went there and directed the party’s campaign there. We won that seat and the CPI (M) was obliterated from Maharashtra. Perhaps that is why I was sent to Tripura – to fight the CPI(M). I was also in charge of the BJP campaign in South Delhi in 2013 and the BJP won seven of the 10 seats from there,” said Deodhar.
He built organisation in Tripura, learnt the local tribal language – Kokborok, organised various morchas of youths, dalits, women and solved many issues. “This built confidence among the people and they started joining BJP. We had also conducted online membership drive and reached our strength from 10000 in 2009 to 175,000 in 2015,” said Deodhar. He added, With many more disgruntled Congress and CPI(M) workers and supporters joining the BJP since then, the party’s membership strength swelled to about four lakh – quite an achievement in a state with 24 lakh voters that plays important role in the victory of BJP in Tripura.