Gautam Gambhir Joins BJP: Influenced by PM Narendra Modi’s vision, What Modi told Gambhir in December

Gambhir is likely to be fielded from the New Delhi constituency which was won by BJP’s Minakshi Lekhi in 2014.​

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Source: The Economic Times

NEW DELHI: Former international cricketer Gautam Gambhir, who has joined the BJP today, says he is an admirer of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “I am joining this party after getting influenced by PM Narendra Modi‘s vision. I am honoured to get the opportunity to join this platform,” Gambhir said.

It so happens that the admiration is mutual — PM Modi too is a fan of Gambhir. In fact, Modi had noticed a few months ago that Gambhir had the inclination for public life. Did he know Gambhir was willing to join politics? We don’t know.

When Gambhir announced retirement from all forms of cricket in December last year, Modi wrote him a letter praising his achievements and stellar career. But besides congratulating him on his success in cricket, Modi also praised him for his nationalistic stance and community service.

“The firmness and frankness with which you have spoken about issues, especially relating to India’s unity and integrity have endeared you to people across the spectrum,” PM Modi wrote in the letter. Since national security and integrity are a core issue for the BJP, it was natural for Modi to praise Gambhir who has been quite vocal on nationalism on social media.

Modi also appreciated Gambhir’s work for the poor. Under his Gautam Gambhir Foundation, Gambhir had started a community kitchen to feed the poor in 2017, just one of his many such ventures. “Alongside your game, you have been at the forefront of several community service initiatives and this is extremely heartening to see. It is great when public figures show the way and devote time as well as resources towards bringing a positive difference in the lives of the lesser privileged,” Modi wrote in his letter. In 2017, after an ambush attack by Naxalite militants on the CRPF patrolling party in Chattisgarh’s Sukma, Gambhir announced that he would bear the cost of the education of the slain CRPF men’s children.

Sharing Modi’s letter on Twitter, Gambhir said, “Thanks @narendramodi @PMOIndia for the kind words. Nothing of this would have been possible without love and support of our fellow countrymen. All these deeds are dedicated to our country.”

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A cricketer with nine million followers on Twitter who airs candid views on nationalism and national security and also runs several ventures for the less privileged should be a prize catch for the BJP ahead of the general elections which it is fighting on the planks of national security and welfare of the poor.

Gambhir played a key role in India’s triumph in the 2011 World Cup and the 2007 T20 World Cup. He was recently awarded the Padma Shri.

Gambhir is likely to be fielded from the New Delhi constituency which was won by BJP’s Minakshi Lekhi in 2014.

The former opening batsman joined the party in Delhi in the presence of
Union ministers Arun Jaitley and Ravi Shankar Prasad.

Jaitley, who described Gambhir’s joining as an “important induction” into the BJP, said the party would take a call at an appropriate time whether to field him in the Lok Sabha polls. Jaitley noted that Gambhir had grown up and studied in Delhi, highlighting his link with the city, and said the party would utilise his talent to the maximum.



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