Vijay Goel

Atal ji love’s me

I still have not come to terms with the fact that our dear Atal ji is no longer with us. I do not remember when and where I first met Atal ji. He was my childhood hero. I was fascinated by his speeches. His speech often used to be in Ramlila Maidan. At that time my family lived in the city and I used to frequent Ramlila Ground on foot to listen to him. His speeches were inspiring and captivating.
My father Shri Charti Lal Goel was already a member of the Bharatiya Jana Sangh, so big leaders like Atal ji, Advani ji used to come and visit my home, but due to my shy nature, I did not interact with them. But, used to keep watching them quietly.
When I became the President of Delhi University Students Union, I contacted Atal ji, he laid the foundation of the statue of Swami Vivekananda at the university on behalf of the student body.
I will never forget the day when Atal ji took along with him Advani ji, Vijay Kumar Malhotra and the late Kanwar Lal Gupta to meet the President of India to register his protest against my expulsion from Delhi University. I was punished for leading a students’ movement. That day I realised how much Atal ji loved me.
But, despite the closeness, I used to be scared of his towering personality. I do not know why I was afraid of him. I have never seen him getting angry or losing his temper. Once I asked him, aap ko gussa nahin atta? (Don't you get angry?). He said he does get angry, but likes to channelize his anger through something constructive.
Atalji and Advani ji walked together in my marriage procession. Atal ji was absolutely walking right next to my mare. Whenever I used to go to Atal ji's house, I used to feel his affection for myself and my family.
Very few people knew that the poet Atal Bihari Vajpayee ji used to love to listen to other poets as well. He used to visit all the “Kavi Samelans” I organized.  Once, when he did not get any other means of transport to go to the Red Fort for a mushaira, he hired a tonga to reach his destination.
He always inspired youngsters to come forward and lead the country. I can vividly remember. It was Lok Sabha election time. My father was already a Delhi legislator. Being a son, I wanted my father to get a party ticket for the election. In this regard, when we had a meeting with Atal ji, he questioned and asked me “Why do not you fight instead? I remained silent. Perhaps it was Atal ji's affection for me or his willingness to encourage a young man like me.
I learned many things from him but the biggest thing I learnt is discipline and patience. For the first time, I got a ticket in Chandni Chowk by-elections. I was made a candidate from Sardar Bazar. Despite, winning the Sadar constituency, in the next election; I was entrusted to fight a tough political seat like Chandni Chowk.
He always advised me to be patient. Often, I used to think that my hard work is going unnoticed. But, Atal ji always monitored and affectionately encouraged youths like me to keep working hard.
Atal ji’s work was so inspiring that it rubbed onto me and I started the movement against social evil like lottery. At each stage of this movement, I received immense guidance and support from him. Finally, when we managed to stop illegal lottery, he applauded me in front of senior political leaders.
Atal ji never allowed personal relationships to obstruct work. When he expressed his love and faith by making me a minister in his cabinet, I became very emotional. He did not just give me responsibility, but gave me another opportunity to learn something new. In 2001 Atal ji handpicked me for his cabinet and entrusted me the position of Union Minister of State responsible for PMO’s office and the Planning Commission.
In 2002, when NDA’s ally Trinamool Congress leader Mamta Banerjee led a movement against Railway’s eviction orders for illegal settlers along rail tracks in West Bengal, Atal ji sent me to meet Mamta Banerjee in Kolkata. The meeting went off well and Atal ji was impressed with my political acumen.
I adore him as a politician, prime minister, and as a statesman.
He has sacrificed a lot. Always done something for the others. But never asked for anything in return.
Atal ji will be remembered in the history of the country and in the history of the world as an ardent speaker, a skilled administrator, a popular and acceptable leader, a visionary.
Will miss you Atal ji.

Vision for Delhi

My visions for Delhi stems from these inspiring words of Swami Vivekanada. I sincerely believe that Delhi has enough number of brave, bold men and women who can make it not only one of the best cities.

My vision for Delhi is that it should be a city of opportunities where people

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