Move to make Sharma as Minister in UP collapses. Yogi shows how to stand up
In a surprise move on Saturday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s trusted aide A K Sharma, who recently took retirement from IAS and became a Member of the Legislative Council (MLC) has been appointed as one of the Vice Presidents of the Uttar Pradesh BJP unit. For the past 2-3 months there were widespread reports that Modi’s most trusted man Sharma is going to be a Minister with key portfolios or even Deputy Chief Minister in Uttar Pradesh. This was seen as an attempt by Modi and Central BJP leadership to tame or control Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath. For the past two weeks, there was talk of differences in opinion between Modi and Yogi on interfering in the Uttar Pradesh Cabinet reshuffle and the induction of A K Sharma.
Yogi has proven his mettle by standing up to interference from Delhi and A K Sharma is accommodated in a less important post in BJP’s Uttar Pradesh state unit. The 1988 Gujarat cadre officer hailing from UP was Secretary of Narendra Modi when he became Chief Minister of Gujarat in October 2001. He was in Prime Minister’s office from May 2014 and was very powerful and in April 2020 appointed as Secretary in MSME (Micro, Small, Medium Enterprises) Ministry handled by Nitin Gadkari.
The question is why did PM Modi try to interfere in CM Yogi’s terrain? That is the politics to control the growing popularity of colleagues by others.
For the past three months, everybody wondered when A K Sharma took voluntary retirement from Secretary to Government of India level with three years’ service pending. Within weeks he joined BJP and became a Member of the Legislative Council (MLC) in a bid to become Minister in Yogi’s Cabinet. This is where the tussle between Modi and Yogi started and ultimately Yogi vetoed Modi’s move to make his trusted IAS officer as Cabinet Minister in Uttar Pradesh. Now Sharma is appointed as State Vice President in UP’s BJP unit, which is having already 16 Vice Presidents.
The question is why did PM Modi try to interfere in CM Yogi’s terrain? That is the politics to control the growing popularity of colleagues by others. So many little known people are airdropped in politics by Central leadership, both by BJP and Congress and regional leaders were belittled. Rarely did regional leaders push back and win. Here Yogi Adityanath has won and stood firm to the Central leadership.
 Former bureaucrat and PM Modi’s aide appointed UP BJP vice-president – Jun 19, 2021, ToI
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