IAS officer who worked closely with PM joins BJP in Lucknow after voluntary retirement

An 1988 batch IAS officer of Gujarat cadre, Arvind Kumar Sharma held the post of Secretary in the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises

Arvind Kumar Sharma, the IAS officer who took voluntary retirement earlier this week, joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Lucknow on Thursday.

An 1988 batch IAS officer of Gujarat cadre, Mr. Sharma has closely worked with Narendra Modi, both in the Chief Minister’s Office (Gujarat) and Prime Minister’s Office in Delhi for almost two decades. Mr. Sharma belongs to the Bhumihar caste and hails from Mau in Purvanchal.

Mr. Sharma held the post of Secretary in the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) when he took voluntary retirement from service ahead of his scheduled superannuation in July 2022.

Uttar Pradesh BJP president Swatantra Dev Singh said Mr. Sharma’s entry into the BJP would raise the stature and honour of the party, and strengthen the State and Central governments as well as the party’s organisation.

“When good officials, good people from society, honest people come to the party, the party’s stature gets raised and due to the party Arvindji would also gain stature,” Mr. Singh said at a press conference while inducting Mr. Sharma.

Mr. Sharma said he hailed from a backward village in Purvanchal and got recruited in the IAS job through hard work and struggle. “To suddenly pick such a person who has no political background or political legacy and induct him into the party, this only Narendra Modi and BJP can do,” Mr. Sharma said.

Though the BJP has not revealed Mr. Sharma’s new role in the party or State government, his induction comes at a time the State is holding elections to fill 12 MLC posts. The BJP is expected to win at least 10 out of the 12 posts and speculation is rife that Mr. Sharma could be among those elected to the State Legislative Council.

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