The demise of former Finance Minister and senior BJP leader & BJP stalwart Arun Jaitley leaves a huge void in our public life and in BJP. India has lost a tall leader and his absence in Indian politics cannot be compensated. .It is disturbing not only for Modi-Government but for whole India to lose a bright, clean and bold veteran politician like Arun Jaitley. He was quite distinct in the way he conducted himself from everyone else. He was completely self-made man and had rose through the ranks to become a dominant power player in the corridors of New Delhi. He served the country and the party for a great number of years and had made great contributions towards shifting the entire political dimensions of the country.
Arun Jaitley was a lawyer by profession and had been a key member of PM Narendra Modi’s Cabinet in the BJP government’s first term. He started his political career in 1974 when he won the election to become the president of Delhi University Students’ Union. A prominent Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and a senior advocate of the Supreme Court of India, Jaitley was the finance minister from 2014 to 2019. Our PM Modi said has rightly said that “With the demise of Arun Jaitley, I have lost a valued friend, whom I have had the honour of knowing for decades. His insight on issues and nuanced understanding of matters had very few parallels,” He valued education for all and made it his goal to ensure that there is a high school within three miles of every child and that education should be improved in terms of quality and learning. He was suave, eloquent, measured, charming, but above all, he was Loyal. During the Narendra Modi government’s first term in office, Arun Jaitley was seen as the prime minister’s ‘go-to’ man. Jaitley was the one to take on the responsibilities of temporarily handling ministries other than his primary portfolio of finance. He was among the leaders who were jailed by the Indira Gandhi government during the Emergency. He was a student leader at the time. After being released from jail, Arun Jaitley joined active politics as a member of the Jan Sangh and rose through the ranks of the organisation, which later became the BJP. He was among the sharpest legal and political brains with great sense of humour
A stalwart of the Bharatiya Janata Party, Jaitley during his long political career held many portfolios including that of Finance, Defence, Corporate Affairs, Commerce and Industry, and Law and Justice. Under the Vajpayee government, he was appointed as the Minister of State for Disinvestment, a ministry created for the first time by the Indian government to give effect to disinvestments under the World Trade Organization. He established himself in the legal field and played an important role in the Bofors case in 1987As a result of this, Vishwanath Pratap Singh, after becoming the Prime Minister, appointed Jaitley as the Additional Solicitor General of India – he was an achiever. He was also vice-president of BCCI but resigned later. As the General Secretary, he managed eight assembly elections, which proved victorious for the BJP. He was re-elected to the Rajya Sabha in April 2012 for his third term. He was recognized as the Leader of Opposition (2009-2012) and had put in constant efforts to bring about positive change. He played a vital role during the talks of the Women Reservation Bill in the Rajya Sabha and also supported Anna Hazare for the Jan Lokpal Bill.
As Leader of Opposition he was without match. Although his life was cut short too soon by the disease, his achievements during his political career will be remembered for a long time to come. His contributions and remarkable legacy remain exemplary for generations to come. His death is an irreparable loss to the nation. He will always be remembered for his sharp, analytical mind and as a soft-spoken, erudite and warm hearted person.
(The views expressed by the author in the article are his/her own.)