A.K. Sharma’s appointment as BJP’s Uttar Pradesh VP surprises many

Appointment of former bureaucrat A.K. Sharma as Vice President of the Uttar Pradesh BJP has come as a surprise to many in the party and government. Till last week, there was a strong buzz across Lucknow and New Delhi that Sharma could be inducted into the Yogi Adityanath government.

With te appointment of Sharma to the party post, there is an indication that the proposed reshuffle in Adityanath cabinet is likely to be delayed or might not take place at all

Uttar Pradesh BJP chief Swatantra Dev Singh on Saturday announced Sharma’s appointment along with other organisational appointments.

A BJP leader, who is part of organisational activities, said: “For hours, I was completely unaware about Sharma’s appointment. There was discussion at different levels about the appointment of Morcha Chiefs, which was also done yesterday, but appointment of new Vice President has come as a surprise to me and many others in the party.”

Another Uttar Pradesh BJP leader said that the entrusting organisational responsibility to Sharma has now ended the speculation that he could be given an important portfolio in the Adityanath cabinet ahead of the 2022 Assembly polls.

Sharma, a Gujarat cadre IAS officer, had worked closely with Prime Minister Narendra Modi for nearly two decades both in the Gujarat Chief Minister’s Office and Prime Minister’s Office.

In January this year, Sharma took voluntary retirement, joined the BJP, and became a Member of Legislative Council in Uttar Pradesh.

A Minister in the Adityanath government said that with Sharma given responsibility of organisational work, there is a question mark on the Adityanath cabinet expansion or reshuffle.

“Now, it seems that all speculation about cabinet reshuffle has been put to rest. Cabinet reshuffle may be delayed or might not take place,” the Minister said.

However, a senior functionary in Uttar Pradesh BJP claims that there was no plan or discussion about inducting Sharma in the Adityanath government and it was just speculation.

“Cabinet expansion or making Sharma a minister in Uttar Pradesh was not part of discussion during the Chief Minister’s recent Delhi visit,” he claimed.