‘The brightest jewel in the Indian crown’

Sumitra Mahajan

[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he shining star on the horizon of Indian politics, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, has bid adieu to us today. He was not only Bharat Ratna, but was truly a bright jewel in the crown of our Motherland. Be it in the fields of literature, politics, social harmony or political moderation, he left his fine imprint in all the areas and set a unique example by building consensus among the leaders of all the parties of the country through his soft-spoken manner. Such an incredible, and invaluable, jewel adding to the glory of our Motherland has left for his heavenly abode today and the precious Gem of the Crown of India has left behind a void.

From a Sangh volunteer to the office of Prime Minister the journey of Atal Bihari Vajpayee was was as inspirational as it was intriguing and he emerged as the brightest star on the horizon of Indian politics. He was one of the greatest sons of Bharat Mata. People were mesmerised by the magical spell of his enchanting personality.

When he used to deliver speeches in Parliament House, or at national and international conferences and conventions, the audience used to listen to him with rapt attention and were held spellbound by what he had to say. He was innovative, as well as pragmatic, in his approach. His ideas, statements, views and poems came straight from his heart.

A sensitive poet par excellence, a patriotic journalist, a leader of the masses, a national leader of the highest stature, a visionary such was the personality of our Vajpayeeji. He was a worker among workers and a leader among leaders at all levels even internationally.

His politics, which was based on his strict principles, his ability to take bold and firm decisions, his far-sightedness, his suave manner and his wit and humour were all his very own and unique hallmark as a politician.

Quick-witted, he used to speak honestly and in a very simple and candid manner. He used to put forth his views in Parliament in a very philosophical manner and his philosophy, thoughts, wit and extraordinary talent shone through his speeches.

He was a fatherly figure, a Guru and guide not only for me, but for lakhs of workers like me. His illustrious personality was a bright source of inspiration to lakhs of workers and he taught us to believe in ourselves. I was privileged to receive his boundless affection and guidance. He was the founding father of the Bharatiya Janata Party, which is the largest political party in the world.

Truly speaking, he had became a legend even during his lifetime, itself, and that magic happened primarily because of the sheer strength of his character and his convictions in all he did.

As an eminent parliamentarian for 10 terms, as a Cabinet minister and, later, as the Prime Minister of India for three terms, he remained an embodiment of all noble values, causes and emotions, with his primary focus being on the development of one and all in the counrty.

In his death, we all of Us in India have lost a true visionary who dreamed of making India a land of our dreams and relentlessly worked to achieve them. His demise has left an eternal void.

(The author of this piece is the Lok Sabha Speaker)