Union minister Nitin Gadkari (PTI photo)
NEW DELHI: Taking a dig at political leaders who take a “shortcut” to becoming famous by putting up their own cut-outs and hoardings, Union road transport minister, Nitin Gadkari urged students not to run after publicity or switch their ideologies for short term gains if they wanted to make a mark in politics.
“Don’t run after publicity and efforts like putting up your own cut outs. I fail to understand why people put their cut outs in cities and towns to publicise their birthday. They spend from their pocket for this publicity. But what have they done? Do you think that you can become a big leader by putting cut outs, publishing advertisements? Did Jayaprakash Narayan, George Fernandes and Atal Bihari Vajpayee use these methods? Please don’t take shortcuts as shortcuts will cut you short,” Gadkari said while addressing a national conclave of Bharatiya Chhatra Sansad.
Citing his experience during the Covid pandemic when he tried to help people in his constituency, the minister said in the beginning he was photographed for whatever he was doing. “I also liked it. But soon I felt bad about it and asked people not to click my photo. I got more satisfaction when people appreciated the work. There was more support and appreciation. Any amount of publicity won’t bring you that level of satisfaction,” he said.
He said while many will be there to take the credit of any victory, defeat is always an “orphan”. Quoting a social thinker, Gadkari said while waste and dead fish flow with the current, the live ones swim against the current.
“In life, ultimately people like truth and in the long term we remember great social leaders who didn’t compromise with their ideologies. But those who shift parties and become ministers or chief ministers don’t remain in public memory for long. We must not compromise with our ideologies,” he added.
Gadkari said those who aspire to join politics must learn that between purse and person, person is important; between person and party, the party is bigger; and between party and ideology, ideology comes first. “Remain loyal to your ideology and remain committed to democracy. Politics only for power is not important,” he said.