Vajpayee Quotes

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आओ फिर से दिया जलाएँ भरी दुपहरी में अंधियारा सूरज परछाई से हारा अंतरतम का नेह निचोड़ें बुझी हुई बाती सुलगाएँ। आओ फिर से दिया जलाएँ हम पड़ाव को समझे मंज़िल लक्ष्य हुआ आंखों से ओझल वतर्मान के मोहजाल में आने वाला कल न भुलाएँ। आओ फिर से दिया जलाएँ। आहुति बाकी यज्ञ अधूरा अपनों के विघ्नों ने घेरा अंतिम जय का वज़्र बनाने नव दधीचि हड्डियां गलाएँ। आओ फिर से दिया जलाएँ
Atal Bihari Vajpayee
it seemed that the pain of their physical illness at times was less than the misery of their poverty ridden existence, the unending wait in the queues and the feeling of hopelessness and abandonment by your own system was enough to rob them of their will power to fight any disease.
Madhu Vajpayee (Seeking Redemption)
दो दिन मिले उधार में, घाटे के व्यापार में, क्षण-क्षण का हिसाब जोड़ूँ या पूँजी शेष लुटाऊँ मैं? राह कौन-सी जाऊँ मैं?
Atal Bihari Vajpayee (चुनी हुई कविताएँ)
She realized that her undiluted love had also given him the power to hurt her but she decided that spirit of the soul can always transcend the pain of the ego.
Madhu Vajpayee (Seeking Redemption)
She concluded that to be able to live without regrets, one has to let go of life that one has planned to give space to life which has been destined.
Madhu Vajpayee (Seeking Redemption)
She was not granted the luxury of forgetting her lower middle-class existence where life hangs by an unseen thread to every hope and where every slash of disappointment shrinks the life further.
Madhu Vajpayee (Seeking Redemption)
You wonder why, after all this, Hashim stays in India. ‘There’s no country freer than India and people don’t realise it,’ Hashim said. ‘You can pee anywhere you like and nothing will happen to you.
A.S. Dulat (Kashmir: The Vajpayee Years)
But Vajpayee was a realist. He had joined the BJP recognising that the party would never come to power during his lifetime. That did not matter so much to him. He had never been after power. Otherwise, he would have accepted Narasimha Rao’s offer, made in 1993, to join the Congress. He was happy sitting in the opposition and sticking to his principles.
Vir Sanghvi (MANDATE: WILL OF THE PEOPLE)
journalist Vinod Mehta wrote, ‘I am convinced if Vajpayee had not been the PM, India would have been sent to fight in George Bush’s Iraq invasion. He dreaded phone calls from George imploring him to send even a token force. “His soldiers are dying and now he wants my soldiers to die. I will never let that happen,”’ Mehta remembered Atal having told him.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
The Kashmiri has a huge problem,’ Hashim said. ‘He doesn’t want to speak the truth, he doesn’t want to hear the truth.
A.S. Dulat (Kashmir: The Vajpayee Years)
Shishon ka koi messiah nahin, kyon aas lagaye baithe ho.
A.S. Dulat (Kashmir: The Vajpayee Years)
whenever a VIP visit to Kashmir was planned, like that of the prime minister, a hundred messages would fly around saying, ‘Usko ura dena, uski baja dena, safed ghar khatam ho jana chahiye.
A.S. Dulat (Kashmir: The Vajpayee Years)
Yes, we have to seek redemption! Redemption from the divisive politics based on caste and religion, redemption from the corruption which is eating our lives like termites, redemption from misery of poverty, redemption from the sins of our venal politicians. We need good governance and accountability. An individual has to fight for the things he rightfully deserves. People do not need crutches of any kind if the basic conditions of nation are conducive to their growth. It’s ridiculous; people are first deprived of basic amenities, denied their dues and then offered carrots to benefit the vote bank politics.
Madhu Vajpayee (Seeking Redemption)
Speaking in the Lok Sabha on 8 May 1959, Atal said: ‘When we accepted the sovereignty of China on Tibet we made a mistake. That day was an unfortunate day. Where has the Panchsheel agreement gone? Those who proclaim Panchsheel say that according to Panchsheel democracy and dictatorship can live together. If for the communist imperialism the peace and religion loving people of Tibet can’t keep their way of life, then it is meaningless to say that in such a big world communism and democracy can co-exist. We don’t want to interfere in the internal affairs of Tibet. But Tibet is not an internal affair of China. I represent a small party but our party defends the independence of Tibet. We want friendship with China but we should not build the palace of this friendship on the dead body of Tibet’s independence.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
During the Kargil war, R.K. Mishra and Aziz would meet secretly, exchanging messages between Musharraf and Vajpayee. Mishra also doubled up as Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) chairman Dhirubhai Ambani’s aide, seeking assurances from the Pakistanis that they would not bomb RIL’s Jamnagar plant.
Sanjaya Baru (The Accidental Prime Minister: The Making and Unmaking of Manmohan Singh)
हरी-हरी दूब पर ओस की बूँदें अभी थीं, अब नहीं हैं। ऐसी खुशियाँ जो हमेशा हमारा साथ दें कभी नहीं थीं, कभी नहीं हैं। क्वार की कोख से फूटा बाल सूर्य, जब पूरब की गोद में पाँव फैलाने लगा, तो मेरी बगीची का पत्ता-पत्ता जगमगाने लगा, मैं उगते सूर्य को नमस्कार करूँ या उसके ताप से भाप बनी, ओस की बूँदों को ढूँढ़ूँ? सूर्य एक सत्य है जिसे झुठलाया नहीं जा सकता मगर ओस भी तो एक सच्चाई है यह बात अलग है कि ओस क्षणिक है क्यों न मैं क्षण-क्षण को जीऊँ? कण-कण में बिखरे सौंदर्य को पीऊँ? सूर्य तो फिर भी उगेगा, धूप तो फिर भी खिलेगी, लेकिन मेरी बगीची की हरी-हरी दूब पर, ओस की बूँद हर मौसम में नहीं मिलेगी।
Atal Bihari Vajpayee (चुनी हुई कविताएँ)
A remorseful Atal, after losing the Lok Sabha elections held after the assassination of Indira Gandhi, said in Gwalior (from where he had contested) that he wanted to clear any misgivings: ‘As a student of class X, I had written “Hindu Tan Man, Hindu Jeevan, Rag Rag Hindu Mera Parichay.” People say that Atal, who had written the poem, is not the same who does politics. There is no truth in it. I am Hindu. How can I forget that? However, my Hindutva is not constricted, it is not narrow.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
ACCORDING TO NEWTON’S THIRD law of motion, every action has an equal and opposite reaction. This holds true for the physical sciences, but in the field of policy reforms and political moves, while every action leads to a reaction, the reaction is not equal to the action.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
मन हारकर, मैदान नहीं जीते जाते, न मैदान जीतने से मन ही जीते जाते हैं।
Atal Bihari Vajpayee (चुनी हुई कविताएँ)
आदमी की पहचान, उसके धन या आसन से नहीं होती, उसके मन से होती है। मन की फकीरी पर कुबेर की संपदा भी रोती है।
Atal Bihari Vajpayee (चुनी हुई कविताएँ)
बाधाएं आती हैं आएं घिरें प्रलय की घोर घटाएं, पावों के नीचे अंगारे, सिर पर बरसें यदि ज्वालाएं, निज हाथों में हंसते-हंसते, आग लगाकर जलना होगा. कदम मिलाकर चलना होगा.
Atal Bihari Vajpayee
He can be called eclectic akin to ancient philosophers who selected doctrines from various schools of thought. Thus he had imbibed and projected a catholicity of views,’ says Supriyo Banerjee, an academic from Kolkata.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
जन्म-मरण का अविरत फेरा, जीवन बंजारों का डेरा, आज यहाँ, कल कहाँ कूच है, कौन जानता, किधर सवेरा, अँधियारा आकाश असीमित, प्राणों के पंखों को तौलें। अपने ही मन से कुछ बोलें!
Atal Bihari Vajpayee (चुनी हुई कविताएँ)
As a former militant commander who spent considerable time in Pakistan told me, ‘There are some very fine officers in the ISI, but no one of Doval’s intellect or
A.S. Dulat (Kashmir: The Vajpayee Years)
Therefore internal debates and bickering continue and inevitably flow into the public domain, confounding the existing confusion. Rajiv Gandhi had once said that intelligence organisations could not be treated like the rest of the bureaucracy. It is time the government settled these issues once and for all—who better to do it than Prime Minister Modi.
A.S. Dulat (Kashmir: The Vajpayee Years)
Vajpayee did not have to look over his shoulder, Manmohan Singh did.
Saeed Naqvi (Being the Other: The Muslim in India)
टू टे हुए तारों से फूटे वासंती स्वर, पत्थर की छाती में उग आया नव अंकुर, झरे सब पीले पात, कोयल की कुहुक रात, प्राची में अरुणिमा की रेख देख पाता हूँ। गीत नया गाता हूँ। टूटे हुए सपने की सुने कौन सिसकी? अंतर को चीर व्यथा पलकों पर ठिठकी। हार नही मानूँगा, रार नई ठानूँगा, काल के कपाल पर लिखता-मिटाता हूँ। गीत नया गाता हूँ।
Atal Bihari Vajpayee (चुनी हुई कविताएँ)
प्रखर प्यार से वंचित यौवन, नीरवता से मुखरित मधुवन, पर-हित अर्पित अपना तन-मन, जीवन को शत-शत आहुति में, जलना होगा, गलना होगा। कदम मिलाकर चलना होगा।
Atal Bihari Vajpayee (चुनी हुई कविताएँ)
One of Atal’s best-known poems is ‘Geet Naya Gaata Hoon’ (I Sing a New Song). The poem begins with the protagonist in a crestfallen mood saying, ‘Geet nahin gaata hoon [I do not sing]’, and further, ‘Benakaab chehre hain, daag bade gehre hain; toota tilism, aaj, sach se bhaya khata hoon, geet nahin gata hoon.’ In the second stanza, the protagonist has regained his confidence and says, ‘Geet naya gata hoon; toote hue taaron se, phoote vasanti swar; paththar ki chaati mein ug aaya nav ankur.’ It ends, ‘Kaal ke kapal par likhta, mitata hoon.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
Mere Prabhu, Mujhe itni unchai kabhi mat dena, Gairon ko gale na laga sakoo, Itni rukhai mat dena. [My Lord, Never let me climb so high that I can’t bend down to embrace another human, Deliver me from such arrogance.]
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
eminent journalist Vinod Mehta wrote, ‘I am convinced if Vajpayee had not been the PM, India would have been sent to fight in George Bush’s Iraq invasion. He dreaded phone calls from George imploring him to send even a token force. “His soldiers are dying and now he wants my soldiers to die. I will never let that happen,”’ Mehta remembered Atal having told him.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
Padmanabhaiah says that one year he was surprised and elated when he went to meet Atal to wish him on his birthday. The civil servant was accompanied by the director of the IB. The prime minister after accepting their birthday wishes, said, ‘You two are able to save three hundred to four hundred lives in Nagaland every year due to your interventions. Thanks are due to you.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
At the same time, when, on one of his visits, Padmanabhaiah recommended a Bharat Ratna for Pandit Bhimsen Joshi, Atal said, ‘For Bharat Ratna no recommendations are accepted.’ Padmanabhaiah persisted and said, ‘He is getting old and may not live much longer.’ Atal shot back, ‘About twenty days back I attended his concert in Pune. He is fine.’ There ended the conversation.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
In Parliament, Atal impressed many with his oratory, which combined both thoughtful content and style of delivery. It is not that he was inhibited in his earlier years and gained confidence with time. Quite early on in his career, he had occasion to disagree with Pandit Nehru. He said on the floor of the Lok Sabha, ‘I know that Panditji practices shirshasana and is welcome to continue doing so, but this does not mean that he should look at issues with an inverted vision.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
A piece by Vinod Mehta sums up Atal’s pleasant style. He wrote: ‘It was impossible not to like him. Periodically I would go to 7 Race Course Road to have tea in his genial company. We would gup-shup. I told him the latest joke doing the rounds and he would pass on whatever came his way. He is the only PM I have known who has a sense of humour and enjoyed the exchange of witticisms. Once when I went to see him, he did not seem his usual jovial self. I asked him why he was so glum. He said, “Apke baad Jayalalithaa aayengi.” Then he laughed uproariously.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
भारत-पाकिस्तान पड़ोसी, साथ-साथ रहना है, प्यार करें या वार करें, दोनों को ही सहना है, तीन बार लड़ चुके लड़ाई, कितना महँगा सौदा, रूसी बम हो या अमेरिकी, खून एक बहना है। जो हम पर गुजरी बच्चों के संग न होने देंगे। जंग न होने देंगे।
Atal Bihari Vajpayee (चुनी हुई कविताएँ)
पाँच दशकों से अधिक राजनीतिक यात्रा के बाद भी देश की बँटी हुई राजनीति को जोड़ने की आवश्यकता स्पष्ट दिखाई देती है। जो केवल सत्ता के लिए नहीं अपितु विघटनकारी शक्तियों से लोहा लेकर राष्ट्रीय हितों की रक्षा करने के काम में आगे बढ़ सकें, उनके लिए ऐसे मंच की सार्थकता सदैव रहेगी।
Atal Bihari Vajpayee (चुनी हुई कविताएँ)
दाँव पर सबकुछ लगा है, रुक नहीं सकते। टूट सकते हैं मगर हम झुक नहीं सकते।
Atal Bihari Vajpayee (चुनी हुई कविताएँ)
Once India achieved its nuclear power status as did Pakistan, Atal felt that it was time that the two countries started working towards good relations. Atal’s counterpart in Pakistan, Nawaz Sharif, also believed that the two countries should foster good relations. Sharif sent an invitation to Atal to visit Pakistan. Pakistan wanted to test the commitment of the new BJP government. Atal responded wholeheartedly and crossed the Attari–Wagah border in Punjab by bus on the afternoon of 19 February 1999. He was accompanied by twenty-two distinguished Indians who included journalists like Kuldeep Nayar, cultural personalities like Mallika Sarabhai and film personalities like Dev Anand and Javed Akhtar. The bus that Atal went by was to become a daily feature from Delhi to Lahore and back. The bus service was to foster better people-to-people contacts, including allowing families that lived on either side of the border to meet each other.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
Immediately after crossing the border, where he was received by Nawaz Sharif, Atal said, ‘This is a defining moment in South Asian history and we will have to rise to the challenge.’ Atal’s aide Sudheendra Kulkarni later recalled how Pakistani information minister Mushahid Hussain had said to him on the sidelines, ‘Vajpayeeji has real guts to come to Pakistan like this and at this time.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
Incidentally, at a reception at Governor House, Atal recited his poem ‘Ab jung naa hone denge hum’. Atal was felicitated at Lahore Fort where, hinting at the common heritage of the two nations, he pointed out how Shah Jahan was born in the fort and Akbar had spent close to a decade there. The audience was so impressed by Atal’s speech that Nawaz Sharif quipped, ‘Vajpayee sahab ab toh Pakistan mein bhi election jeet sakte hain. [Mr Vajpayee can now win elections even in Pakistan.]
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
The composite dialogue could, however, not get going in Atal’s tenure because elections were called early and the results pushed his government out of power. Although Atal could not achieve lasting peace with Pakistan, his intentions can never be doubted. In fact, Alex Perry wrote in TIME magazine, on 26 April 2004, that Atal’s plan to ‘visit Pakistan to talk with Musharraf in Islamabad and the agreement to end half a century of war and hostility’ had only one parallel in modern history and that was Egyptian President Anwar Sadat’s 1977 mission to Jerusalem.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
बाद मुद्दत के मिले हैं दिवाने, कहने सुनने को बहुत हैं अफसाने. खुली हवा में जरा सांस तो ले लें, कब तक रहेगी आजादी कौन जाने.
Atal Bihari Vajpayee
When you are angry with someone,at least you acknowledge that person’s existence. But with indifference,you kill him by invalidating his very existence.
Madhu Vajpayee (Seeking Redemption)
Sometimes it’s easier to live when there is no hope left. A strange sense of freedom ironically fills up the space where earlier hopes lived.
Madhu Vajpayee (Seeking Redemption)
Her face reflecting the color of her dress, she glowed even in her disappointment...... perhaps the way of her defiance to the fate.
Madhu Vajpayee
Every individual is fighting his own war for survival against the system.And system is destroying the sanctity of an individual.
Madhu Vajpayee (Seeking Redemption)
In 1998, when Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee was unseated by a vote of no-confidence, Sonia made an abortive bid to become prime minister. She was thwarted by Mulayam Singh Yadav who withdrew support to the Congress-led government after indicating an initial willingness to offer it.
Sanjaya Baru (P. V. Narasimha Rao vs the Nehru-Gandhi Family)
since 1989, all-India elections have been fought over such non-issues as the Bofors and hawala scandals, the reconstruction of a non-existing temple, reservations of a few thousand jobs in government service, the merits of a Vajpayee over a foreign-born Sonia Gandhi, or victory over a few hundred intruders in Kargil.
Bipan Chandra (India Since Independence)
At that time, my friend Madhwarao, a leader of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh’s intellectual circle, came to my small house in Mysore, riding pillion on somebody’s scooter. I was surprised to see him transformed. He was usually dressed in the Sangh Parivar uniform, but that day he came wearing a T-shirt and trousers. As he settled down, Madhwarao said, ‘You must be surprised at my clothes. I have gone underground now.’ I asked him a question then. ‘Why do you oppose Indira Gandhi? I just don’t understand it. She dismissed the DMK government that was inimical to the Aryans. She enforced family planning programmes on Muslims to prevent them from having too many children. She split Pakistan and facilitated the creation of Bangladesh. She got India the atom bomb. By annexing Sikkim, she expanded the country. She made sure trains ran on time. The idea of Savarkar’s India was reinforced through Indira Gandhi. Why then do you oppose her?’ An intellectual like Madhwarao had no answer to this. A few years later, when Vajpayee, whom Govindacharya described as ‘just a mask’, was the prime minister, some prominent RSS leaders said that Indira Gandhi was our true leader. Allow
U.R. Ananthamurthy (Hindutva or Hind Swaraj)
The President may first appoint him the Prime Minister and then ask him to prove his majority in the Lok Sabha within a reasonable period. For example, Charan Singh (1979), VP Singh (1989), Chandrasekhar (1990), PV Narasimha Rao (1991), AB Vajyapee (1996), Deve Gowda (1996), IK Gujral (1997) and again AB Vajpayee (1998) were appointed as Prime Ministers in this way.
M. Laxmikanth (Indian Polity)
I don’t think Kashmiriyat is dead, nor is Sufism. If we don’t support the idea of Kashmiriyat or the Sufi tradition, it will fade out eventually, because radicalism is increasing. Sheikh Saheb was said to be a pure Musalman but he kept the Jamaat-e-Islami at bay, telling them they were not going to meddle in political life. After him, Farooq was the same way and in fact more aggressive about it, saying that they should close down all the Jamaat schools and that if Delhi funded the state, it would set up its own schools. But he did not get that much support. This is getting compromised. If you don’t do anything about Kashmir, then more and more Wahhabism will come in, as petro-dollars, etc., with their mosques growing and the lectures from their mosques increasing. A couple of years ago I was leaving Srinagar on a Friday and I was startled. Every road I passed had a loudspeaker blaring for the jumme ka namaaz. This never happened earlier. To my surprise, one of the breeding grounds of the fast-spreading radicalism is the Srinagar jail. A Kashmiri who was detained twice under the Public Security Act told me that the atmosphere of radicalism was so suffocating that you felt that you were in a jail inside a jail. So long as the likes of Masarat Alam and Qasim Fakhtoo are given free rein radicalism will grow. While Pakistan remains a factor in Kashmir, the real danger is that radicalism will end up as the lasting political legacy of Kashmir.
A.S. Dulat (Kashmir the Vajpayee Years)
Then Vajpayee mentioned Gujarat. ‘Woh hamare se galti hui,’ he said. Perhaps he felt that was the reason he lost power; because he did not stop the 2002 riots.
A.S. Dulat (Kashmir the Vajpayee Years)
Firdous is a man who wanted peace, but it seemed as if no one wanted him.
A.S. Dulat (Kashmir the Vajpayee Years)
once jokingly remarked to Dr Singh that in Vajpayee’s time the principal secretary functioned as if he were the PM,
Sanjaya Baru (The Accidental Prime Minister: The Making and Unmaking of Manmohan Singh)
In Brajesh’s case it was not a question of him briefing the prime minister because they knew each other so well. It was a question of sitting down and discussing a matter. So at the end of every day Brajesh would leave office at about 6:30 p.m.—he didn’t sit late, like a lot of people do—and he would go to RCR, where he would spend his time depending on how much time Vajpayee had. He probably wound up and reached home at 8:30 to 9:00 p.m. most evenings. You might wonder how the government functioned at all in this easygoing manner, but the truth is, in our country the government functions on its own and in Vajpayee’s time it functioned smoothly despite the fact that there was a coalition government. Vajpayee managed the coalition very well: he was good with people, he was good with words, and above all he had a sense of humour.
A.S. Dulat (Kashmir the Vajpayee Years)
Dr Singh took his job seriously. He rose early and, after a morning walk, exercise and a light breakfast, usually walked down from 3 RCR to 7 RCR between quarter to nine and nine o’clock. For those who had worked in the Vajpayee PMO, this was all very new. Vajpayee had slowed down towards the end of his term and
Sanjaya Baru (The Accidental Prime Minister: The Making and Unmaking of Manmohan Singh)
I have only completed what you began,’ Dr Singh said, breaking the silence. Vajpayee smiled, nodded his head again, got into the car and drove away.
Sanjaya Baru (The Accidental Prime Minister: The Making and Unmaking of Manmohan Singh)
was standard practice in the Vajpayee PMO for some journalists to get such limousines when travelling abroad with the PM. I was told that Vajpayee’s son-in-law, Ranjan Bhattacharya, who had befriended many senior editors, had taken personal interest in ensuring that the PMO’s favoured journalists were well looked after. I brought to an end all such privileges and incurred the wrath of some professional peers.
Sanjaya Baru (The Accidental Prime Minister: The Making and Unmaking of Manmohan Singh)
I am ready to ask kar sevaks who were small in numbers to come forward and openly confess that they demolished the structure and face the music. I would also like to state that there were a large number of kar sevaks not involved in demolition. If the intent was to demolish secretly and according to a plan it would not require kar seva. Whatever happened there, we regret the incident.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
When Atal was in office, some of his associates had raised the clamour that he should award the Bharat Ratna to himself. This was after his success in the Kargil conflict. His predecessors, Jawaharlal Nehru and Indira Gandhi, had awarded themselves the Bharat Ratna, Nehru getting it in 1955 and Indira Gandhi in 1971. Atal, however, was not a man to do such a thing.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
Manmohan had thought very highly of Atal ever since the mid-1990s. Apparently, Atal had sternly criticized Manmohan in the Lok Sabha when he was the finance minister. Manmohan was so taken aback that he went to submit his resignation to his boss Narasimha Rao.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
L.K. Advani wrote a personal letter to Manmohan Singh, putting forth the demand. Stories doing the rounds suggest that Manmohan Singh, the then prime minister, was not averse to it, but UPA chairman Sonia Gandhi would not agree.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
Nehru once introduced Atal to the British prime minister, stating, ‘He is a young leader of the opposition who is always criticizing me, but I see in him a great future.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
Atal also answered the charge that his party should not have tried to form the government since the BJP got only a minority of votes. He pointed out that the first-past-the-post Westminster system that was followed in the country counted only the seats that a party won and not the percentage of votes polled. By implication, the BJP could not be blamed for jumping in to try and form a government.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
On 17 April 1999, the government got 269 votes in its favour while 270 votes went against. On the morning of that day, Atal spoke to BSP chief Mayawati, who promised to support the government. However, when Mayawati stood up to address the Lok Sabha, she announced that her party would vote against the government.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
He told India Today in the interview quoted earlier: ‘Yes, the tests have entailed a price. But we should not worry about it. India has a reservoir of resources and inner strength. If we tap its reservoir, the benefit will be a hundred times more than any price that we may have to pay in the short run.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
Further, a solution to the Kashmir problem must take into account the interests of India, Pakistan and above all the Kashmiri people (the words ‘above all’ were inserted at the instance of Atal).
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
on 12 October 1984, just a few weeks before the assassination of Indira Gandhi, Atal declared, ‘Our hour of trial is approaching. This government is a danger to democracy. In its insatiable lust for power, one single family has jeopardized the unity of an entire nation. In Punjab there is neither peace nor settlement. In Assam there is lull before a storm; a terrible crisis in Assam can erupt now.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
Atal also wondered whether Indira Gandhi was mulling a presidential system for India and was planning to rule India with the army sharing power. He said, ‘[The] PM is glibly telling the world that there is no harm in having a national debate on the desirability of the presidential system. One wonders if the PM has any clear concept apart from perpetuating her family in power.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
There is nothing that succeeds like success and conversely nothing fails like failure.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
Atal realized that if the Congress party was successful in hanging on to power, it was because it reflected the desires and aspirations of the citizens in some measure. The easiest course for an opposition party is to launch a course of action and espouse an ideology that is diametrically opposed to that of the ruling party. However, Atal never aspired to do so. He knew that if the Congress party was doing something right, it had to be imbibed even at the risk of being criticized.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
The greatest curse, not merely of Indian politics but of national life as a whole, is the general incapacity to work together. Let’s learnt to unite, instead of dividing to create harmony where disharmony exists and to keep our self-interest and ego in leash.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
He also believed that ‘you can change friends but not your neighbours’, and that is why he aggressively pursued peace with neighbours like Pakistan.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
At the same time, Atal also advised that journals connected with the RSS should not take sides in the power games going on in the political arena. He also said that the RSS should not be involved in youth bodies that interacted with political parties or with trade unions. He significantly advised the RSS to formally enunciate its accepted stand that by Hindu Rashtra it meant Bharatiya Rashtra.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
Indira Gandhi lambasted the Jana Sangh for its concept of ‘Indianization’ which is said to have been directed against Indian Muslims. She said she would deal with a party like the Jana Sangh in five minutes. Atal was mighty miffed. He replied, ‘PM says she can deal with the Jana Sangh in five minutes. Can any democratic PM speak like this? I say in five minutes you cannot even deal with your own hair, how you can [sic] deal with us. When Nehruji was angry he would at least make a good speech. We used to tease him. But we cannot do that with Indira. She gets angry on her own.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
He said on the floor of the Lok Sabha, ‘I know that Panditji practices shirshasana and is welcome to continue doing so, but this does not mean that he should look at issues with an inverted vision.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
Every time, however, Atal rose to the defence of the RSS. For instance, on 27 May 1996, when the short-lived Atal government was sought to be replaced by Deve Gowda, Atal said on the floor of the Lok Sabha that the RSS was an organization that was wedded to the cause of the nation. He gave two examples, one of the Republic Day parade of 1963 (after the Chinese debacle) when the RSS was one of the organizations invited to send in representatives to participate in the march past to demonstrate national unity. The other one related to 1965 when, at the time of the Indo-Pak war, the government had deployed RSS men to regulate traffic on the roads of Delhi. Atal went on to quote Deve Gowda who, while speaking at a function in Bangalore in the midst of the Emergency, had said, ‘RSS is a spotless organization.’ Atal added that the RSS was an independent organization and while ‘you can differ with the RSS, the allegations against them are not required’.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
A livid Atal answered, ‘Main aisi charcha mein nahin padna chahta [I do not want to be drawn into such discussions].’ He added: It is alleged that I work under pressure. I do not work under anybody’s pressure. Your party under pressure stopped nuclear tests. The dates were ready and the preparations had been made. But under foreign pressure the tests were stopped. But we went ahead with the nuclear tests in spite of the pressures. When we were fighting in Kargil, Clinton pressured us to talk to Pakistan. But we said that so long as Pakistan holds one cent of our land we will not talk. What does Soniaji want to say? When she was in Italy I had started doing parliamentary work. I know about my countrymen more than you. Who are you to tell about the Sangh Parivar pressure? This is an internal Parivar matter. Aap dakhal mat dijiye.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)
ACCORDING TO NEWTON’S THIRD law of motion, every action has an equal and opposite reaction. This holds true for the physical sciences, but in the field of policy reforms and political moves, while every action leads to a reaction, the reaction is not equal to the action. In some cases, the reaction is greater than the action and in others it is the reverse.
Kingshuk Nag (Atal Bihari Vajpayee: A Man for All Seasons)