Thursday, December 3, 2020
Home Opinions Atal Bihari Vajpayee was no less than a superhero for India

Atal Bihari Vajpayee was no less than a superhero for India

It was in 2002 when the dinner table discussions at home started becoming incomprehensible to 8 years old kid that I was back then. Vaguely do I remember, the words like ‘coalition government’, BJP, Kashmir, etc started bombarding the chats during every family gathering we had which always passed tangentially to my head.

My childish mind was so troubled and distraught over the question of why everyone keeps talking about Atal Bihari Vajpayee and not about my favourite superhero, Superman even on my birthday! What is he doing so miraculous in the nation that people are in an awe of him? Only to realise later that he was no less than a superhero for India when I took my first metro ride in Delhi. Yes, metro train in our very own country which all of sudden changed the outlook of the country from a poor nation which I used to read in social science textbooks to a prospering nation.

As I grew up and happened to pursue economics as my majors in graduation in 2012, I started reading about the economic trajectory that India achieved in the past two decades. That became a moment of political awakening for me and I could connect the dots of all the past discussions that I used to scoff at as a kid. The biggest deprivation that we millennials suffer is of not witnessing the strategic developments revved up by Atal Bihari Vajpayee that transformed the very face of India that we boast of now. This enlightening brouhaha moment made me delve deeper into the recent history of Indian politics.

Attempting to read scores of books and articles on the political regime of 1998-2004, I realised that India heralded a new era under the aegis of Shri Atal Bihari. What made me adore his leadership is his well-articulated economic policies that sustained the growth of 6%-8% amidst the chaos of Gulf war, Asian financial crisis, Indo-Pak terror attacks and Dot Com Bubble. He took the nation out from the shackles of dampening and a sluggish economy and provided a sturdy backbone for India’s future endeavours by investing robustly in human development and most notably, “Education for All”.  The Golden Quadrilateral and other National Highways that we are travelling on seamlessly today are all his legacy. Despite these breathtaking developments, the puzzle that why he assumes massive respect of people got solved the day I learnt that he was the first ever India leader to render UN speech in the Hindi language.

His words “Quiet diplomacy is more effective than public posturing” still echoes in my head. His pioneering foreign diplomacy with the United States and attempts at resolving the troubles with the West post-cold war era deserve head bows. History is a testimony to the fact by imbibing the slogan of “Insaniyat, Jhamuriyat and Kashmiriyat” for the disturbed valley of Kashmir, he laid the foundation of a new Kashmir. I still doubt if any other leader before and after him could take on the challenge of this stature.

He was a leader who was much ahead of his time and dared to lay grounds for nuclear capacity and space technology for future India which would lead India towards the league of the leaders of the world. His dedication towards the service of nation is evident from the fact that despite massive backlash for his nuclear and space program at home and abroad, he shunned his short-sighted political gains for the larger interest of the country, and steadfastly carried on the development whose benefits we are reaping today.

All during my teenage I senselessly cribbed for being politically unaware during those times, and obviously, how could a child be! The years that followed 2004 had lost all the enthusiasm and passion that India had built during preceding years. The lull that followed made me more uncomfortable as the robustness in progress of the nation was nowhere to be seen and soul of the country was having a slow demise. There were no more family discussions in praise of India and soon my inquisitiveness dissipated too. The spirit of nation-building and nationalism which was invoked by Atal Ji was all of sudden missing until Narendra Modi took over the reign of the country.

The present government proved as a respite and seems like compensating on those good old days. Fortunately, the present government is treading on the footsteps of Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s government and we once again got an opportunity to re-live the past days. Atal Ji’s vision of New and Transformed India is meticulously carried forward by Narendra Modi’s government by taking the nation on a fast-track mode as was done back in 1998. I just hope that today’s leadership does complete justice to the sacrifices and foundation laid down twenty years back.

India was truly blessed to have a statesman like him, whose tenure is marked as eventful and historic. He redefined Indian secularism, diplomacy and democracy. He was a man of charisma with the deepest understanding of his nation and its pupil as he always said, “India isn’t India if it is not Secular.” In the ending note from a fangirl, I must also admit that he, as a human being and as a leader has left an indelible mark in my life and has been my inspiration to pursue public policy as a career for myself.

(This article has been authored by Anchal Chaudhary)

  Support Us  

Whether NDTV or 'The Wire', they never have to worry about funds. In name of saving democracy, they get money from various sources. We need your support to fight them. Please contribute whatever you can afford

Related Articles

Trending now

Darshan Pal, the coordinator of the farmer protests, was a founding member of Maoist organisation PDFI. Read details

Darshan Pal, who demanded special parliament session to repeal farm laws, was convenor of 51-member executive committee of Maoist group PDFI

Even pandering doesn’t get India Today a free pass: Here is why ‘liberals’ are today cancelling Rajdeep and Rahul Kanwal

'Liberals' are cancelling India Today, Rajdeep Sardesai and Rahul Kanwal over their coverage of the allegations against Shehla Rashid

Raut gives bizarre analogy trying to defend party after Azan row: Here are 4 things that he could have meant

Sanjay Raut came up with an absurd analogy in Shiv Sena mouthpiece Saamana to ward off criticism over azaan recitation competition

The return of ‘Award Wapsi’: As farmers protest continue, former Punjab sportspersons want to return awards

Punjab sportspersons have claimed that they will go to Delhi on 5th December and put their awards outside Rashtrapati Bhavan

Indonesian radical Muslims change words of Azan from ‘hurry to the prayer’ to ‘rise up for Jihad’: Here is what happened

A verse of the chant, which originally means “hurry to the prayer”, has been changed to “hayya alal jihad”, or “rise up for jihad” in Azan

Kangana Ranaut served legal notice for mistaking an elderly woman in farmer protests for Bilkis Bano of Shaheen Bagh

Kangana Ranaut had commented on Twitter that the Shaheen Bagh Dadi was available on hire for appearing in protests. She had deleted her tweet later.

Recently Popular

Indian man proposes to his Australian girlfriend during Ind vs Aus cricket match, here is what happened next

While India's performance has been below par, netizens found happiness in the unusual proposal that became the highlight of the match.

Yogi snubs Trudeau, deputes bureaucrats to welcome the Canadian PM

The Canadian PM seems to be getting differential treatment

Indian Idol contestant reveals how she faced opposition from conservative Muslim society as singing is ‘not allowed’

The Indian Idol contestant revealed how women in her society are looked down upon if they try to excel in any field.

Ex-Indian cricketer Yuvraj Singh’s father Yograj Singh joins Farmer’s protests, justifies “Indira thok di” comment

Multiple videos of Yograj Singh, Yuvraj Singh's father, have gone viral on social media where he has been giving provocative speeches amid the ongoing farmer protests

Shiv Sena to organise Azaan recitation competition, party leader calls it as important as ‘Maha Aarti’

Shiv Sena is to bear the cost of the event and will also reward the contest winners.

Instead of answering allegations, Shehla Rashid decides to run away from a live show, calls her father ‘greedy’

Shehla Rashid, JNU student leader, has been accused by her biological father Abdul Rashid Shora, of taking Rs 3 crore from terror funding accused Zahoor Vatali and Rashid Engineer.

Darshan Pal, the coordinator of the farmer protests, was a founding member of Maoist organisation PDFI. Read details

Darshan Pal, who demanded special parliament session to repeal farm laws, was convenor of 51-member executive committee of Maoist group PDFI

Govt of India orders Wikipedia to remove an image showing wrong map of Jammu and Kashmir

This matter was flagged by a Twitter user asking government to take action against Wikipedia for displaying a wrong map of India

‘Jinnah did everything that is banned in Islam’: Images of alcoholic drink ‘Ginnah’ named after Pakistan founder Muhammad Ali Jinnah go viral

A photo of a gin bottle 'Ginnah', eponymously named after Pakistan's founder Muhammad Ali Jinnah, has gone viral on social media websites

Even pandering doesn’t get India Today a free pass: Here is why ‘liberals’ are today cancelling Rajdeep and Rahul Kanwal

'Liberals' are cancelling India Today, Rajdeep Sardesai and Rahul Kanwal over their coverage of the allegations against Shehla Rashid

Pro-AAP blogger Dhruv Rathee wants foreign interference in country’s internal matters to offer Indians a solution

Dhruv Rathee claimed that India’s institutions have already been hijacked and have become puppets at the hands of Modi government

Captain Amarinder Singh hits out at Arvind Kejriwal, Kejriwal hits back but ends up making no sense: Read what happened

Arvind Kejriwal accused Amarinder SIngh of playing 'low level politics', after Singh slammed him for notiyig a farm law they are opposing

Yogi Adityanath responds to Shiv Sena’s Sanjay Raut, busts claim about UP wanting to take film city away from Maharashtra

CM Yogi had announced that country's biggest Film City would be established at Gautam Buddh Nagar in Uttar Pradesh.

Raut gives bizarre analogy trying to defend party after Azan row: Here are 4 things that he could have meant

Sanjay Raut came up with an absurd analogy in Shiv Sena mouthpiece Saamana to ward off criticism over azaan recitation competition

Zombie Mink: Hundreds of mink carcasses emerge from the burial trenches in Denmark after mass-culling exercise

Dubbed as Zombie mink, the farm mink that were culled to prevent Covid-19 outbreak have 'emerged from their graves' in Denmark.

The return of ‘Award Wapsi’: As farmers protest continue, former Punjab sportspersons want to return awards

Punjab sportspersons have claimed that they will go to Delhi on 5th December and put their awards outside Rashtrapati Bhavan

Connect with us

245,563FansLike
492,264FollowersFollow
20,300SubscribersSubscribe