In the cricketing world, whenever there is a fund raiser for a world disaster, cricketers around the world get together & participate in one team and play a charity match–World 11 V/s Legends 11. This is the only time when we see great players of different teams playing with each other in partnerships. In the past Sachin Tendulkar and Brian Lara have batted together and Wasim Akram has bowled along side Shane Warne. It is a sight no cricketing fan would ever want to miss to see his dream best playing for each other rather than against each other.
I too, have such a fantasy. I would call it a fantasy– as never ever what I am wanting to see, will ever happen. Just as cricket is a national topic of discussion amongst all, politics today cannot be left behind. Such is the bug, that the latest HUG of Rahul Gandhi to a somewhat surprised PM Modi, was the topic amongst the youngsters discussed at a pub where I was partying Friday night. Anyway, can one day come in our Maharashtra State Politics when we see great politicians working TOGETHER for a common cause for a limited time? They come together many times, but then party ideologies or message from the torch bearers of their respective party, spoil it, even at the cost of a genuine cause. I want to see our today’s Birthday boys working for some time together. Ajit Pawar & Devendra Fadnavis. Fantasy hai? Kya Kare??
22nd July is the date when two of my most favourite politicians celebrate their birthdays. I don’t know why but for one day I want these two firebrands working together….Both are the bestest administrators of good governance in my little knowledge of Maharashtra politics after Sharad Pawar & Vilasrao Deshmukh. Oh No, this does not come from the party karyakartas but from the various IAS non-IAS bureaucrats who have worked under these two. Never ever, has Ajit Pawar known to interfere in working of any of his ACS, PS, or even Secretaries. He might have his agenda, but once convinced by the bureaucrat, he always took the logical step, says a veteran bureaucrat who took VRS and has had the opportunity to work under him at the power department.
Another bureaucrat said to me once that Ajit Pawar has his own style of making money. He is not the one who will have an eye on every small tender or file coming to his table. His style is somewhat similar to a heavy weight of BJP who is in Delhi now. He ‘co-operates’ only in 1 or 2 big files in a year and that’s it. It is only an impression that Ajit Dada has an interest in every file that comes to his table. It is not like that. He has his own way of making money. But on that, some other time….I recollect, his Janta Darbar’s …..every Thursday Ajit Pawar use to be present at state HO of NCP at 7 am sharp leaving then State Presidents and many ministers in awe. Ajit Pawar helped and met every individual who thronged for hours at NCP office on this particular day and everyone means everyone got an audience with him along with patient hearing and at times even calls to the local governing staffs to do their works. Who does this now? RR Patil who gathered equal attention and audience was only a sweet talker. He helped only journalists get their news and only to whom he was ‘pressured’ from. Even today many journalists and my friends in bureaucracy say, the control which Ajit dada had on bureaucracy, no one could demand that, leave apart Narayan Rane who too enjoyed good support.
With exact same enthusiasm and agenda Devendra Fadnavis our another birthday boy cannot be left behind. Few helps to his best friends here & there (that also if you tell him and explain him logically he will call his best friend and ask him to take a step back) is alright. After all, he is running a huge party. Bureaucrats who hated him and tried to pass him as ‘new’ have been silenced and how. Fadnavis has managed to gain control over them too….To manage RSS, PMO his own internal corrupt team of Ministers is no easy task but yet the man is running the show successfully along with few good bureaucrats whom he has shown a lot of faith in. Pravin Pardeshi tops the list in that, along with the Mhaiskar’s (both brilliant husband-wife), Ajoy Mehta, Nitin Kareer, Deepak Kapoor, Bhushan Gagrani and so on…Few controversies in regard to the his support to Brahmin category and in justice to Medha Gadgil had his opponents tongues wagging, but Fadnavis paid no heed. Similarly he had decided right from the beginning to have yet another “KAYASTA” CP Mumbai which he got in form of Jaiswal. A lot of them tried, but in vain.
Believe me when I say this, Fadnavis is next level of Sharad Pawar. He is shrewd, lethal and emotional also at the same time. If someone thought that he is the closest to Devendra Fadnavis now, believe me it is Devendra Fadnavis who wants him to become close. Once if the person takes his advantages few here & there, Fadnavis will take no time to show send him far, very far and yes he does this with his patent innocent smile. Ashish Shelar is one of the biggest example of this, along with Eknath Khadse. There were bureaucrats who were his blue eyed boys but God alone knows what happen they are suddenly in his not so liked list. A Municipal Commissioner who initially had a non-corrupt background was due to take place of Pravin Darade in the CMO. But gossips of his friendship with the Collector and Police Commissioner of the largest district of Maharashtra reached his ears and gone…he was dropped–same for an ex IT department’s ACS. But there are cases also when Fadnavis wants a particular bureaucrat in his team he will go out of the way for them. Take case of Pallavi Darade or Sachin Kurve.
Both Ajit Pawar & Devendra Fadnavis are dynamic. They are young and have mass base. Ajit Pawar gets shadowed at times because of his uncle and here Fadnavis gets pressurised by the PMO & Gadkari. Both are excellent orators with excellent knowledge gained from ground work. Due to the irrigation scam, Ajit Pawar has lost his voice a bit, but it would be no time that this leader, if & when given a clean chit, will be delivering. Have attended assembly sessions for long to understand that there is no match to Devendra Fadnavis in controlling the House. Had Ajit Pawar not been groped in the irrigation scam, he was the only one along with Prithviraj Chavan who could have been a challenge to the government. What more to say, even with different ideologies and teachings may these two guide our Maharashtra to become one of the most powerful states of our country for years to come….
Wishing these two dynamic leaders a very very Happy Birthday !!!
Vikrant Hemant Joshi