New Delhi, Aug 17: In a moving tribute to Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Prime Ministre Narendra Modi on Friday penned down an emotional blog on his official website - narendramodi.in - and recalled how the former prime minister tranformed the country. In his blog, PM Modi said India was blessed to have a leader like Atal Bihari Vajpayee.
"In times of turbulence and disruption, a nation is blessed to have a leader who rises to become its moral compass and guiding spirit, providing vision, cohesion and direction to his people. And, in such a moment at the turn of the century, India found one in Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who was gifted in spirit, heart and mind," PM Modi wrote.
PM Modi said Vajpayee defined the spirit of democracy and opposed the Emergency. "Through the four decades of leadership in Parliament, the struggle against Emergency (who can forget that memorable rally in Delhi’s Ramlila Maidan when his speech became the roar of the nation), the clarity to represent his party with passion but always speak for the nation, he defined the spirit of democracy in India," Modi stated.
"It was Atalji who prepared the foundations of an India that is ready to take on the mantle of global leadership in the 21st century. The futuristic economic policies and reforms of his government ensured prosperity for several Indians. His thrust on next-generation infrastructure particularly roads and telecom contributed to our country’s economic as well as social empowerment," he added.
Calling him a guru, PM Modi said Atal Bihari Vajpayee inspired him deeply and expressed confidence in him while asking him to become the chief minsiter of Gujarat in 2001. He further stated, "he was ahead of the times, because he had a deep sense of history, and he could peer into the soul of India from his grasp of our civilizational ethos".
"It was he who entrusted me with responsibilities both in Gujarat as well as at the national level. It was he who called me one evening in October 2001, and told me to go to Gujarat as the chief minister. When I told him that I had always worked in the organization, he said he was confident I would fulfill the people’s expectations. The faith he had in me was humbling," Modi wrote.
"A life is to be judged not just by the extent of grief that follows when its light goes out. It is also to be measured by the lasting impact on the lives of people and the course of time. For that reason, Atalji was a true Ratna of Bharat. His spirit will continue to guide us as we build the New India of his dreams," he concluded.