Lucknow, Jan 18 (IANS) The entry of former bureaucrat Arvind Sharma in the BJP, just days after he took voluntary retirement from the IAS cadre, may have raised hackles in political circles but this is no longer an exception in Uttar Pradesh politics.
It is slowly becoming a trend.
Several former bureaucrats in Uttar Pradesh are now established politicians and the Congress, which was the first to criticise Sharma joining politics, has also welcomed bureaucrats into its fold.
P.L. Punia, former principal secretary to Mulayam Singh Yadav and Mayawati when they were chief ministers, joined the Congress after retirement and has emerged as the Dalit face of the party.
Ahmad Hasan, a former IPS officer, had joined the Samajwadi Party after retirement and has served as minister in the SP government. He has been the leader of opposition in the Vidhan Parishad and is close to both Mulayam Singh Yadav and Akhilesh Yadav.
Sitting BSP MP Shyam Singh Yadav is a former PCS officer who joined BSP just before the 2019 Lok Sabha election. Retired Director General of Police Brijlal joined the BJP after retirement and was sent to the Rajya Sabha in 2020.
Another former bureaucrat in politics is Tribhuvan Ram who retired as chief engineer of PWD and then joined BSP. He served as MLA and later joined the BJP.
B.P. Singhal, former IPS officer and brother of late VHP leader Ashok Singhal, was sent to the Rajya Sabha after he joined the BJP post retirement.
Shirish Chandra Dixit was among the first IPS officers who joined the BJP in the 1980s and played a key role in the Ayodhya temple movement. He was also elected to the 10th Lok Sabha from Varanasi.
Devendra Bahadur Rai, who was SSP Faizabad in 1992 when the Babri Masjid demolition took place, later joined the BJP after retirement and went on to become MP from Sultanpur.
Retired IAS officer Devi Dayal also joined the Congress after retirement and even contested a Lok Sabha election. Former IPS officer Mahendra Singh Yadav had taken voluntary retirement from service and went on to become a legislator from SP. His wife, Neera Yadav, was chief secretary in UP.
Bureaucrats including S.K. Varma, R.P. Shukla and Baba Hardev joined the Rashtriya Lok Dal after retirement while some others formed their own party.
Former IAS officer Chandrapal formed the Adarsh Samaj Party and Tapendra Prasad, former PCS, formed Samyek Party. Both could not make much headway in politics.
Defending the trend of bureaucrats making their way into politics after retirement, ex-DGP Brijlal said, “As officers, we work for the people and we continue doing the same when we join politics. If people from other professions can join politics, why can’t bureaucrats after retirement?”