The Uttar Pradesh unit of Bharatiya Janata Party on Saturday appointed its state MLC A K Sharma, a former IAS officer, the party's state vice president. The announcement of Sharma, considered a trusted aide of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, being made the vice chief of the party's state unit, was made by the state BJP president Swatantra Dev Singh.
Sharma was handed over the new assignment amid speculation that he would be inducted in the Yogi Adityanath government in a senior ministerial position ahead of the next year’s assembly elections.
Sharma’s appointment as the vice president of the BJP’s state unit negates the chances of his induction in the state Cabinet because of the BJP's larger principal of one-man-one-post, a party leader said.
BJP MLC A K Sharma is also considered close to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Known for delivering time-bound results, Sharma earned Modi's confidence as his secretary during his tenure as the Gujarat chief minister by successfully handling the Vibrant Gujarat campaign to get investments to the state.
He was also handling the MSME (micro, small and medium enterprises) ministry’s affairs, a crucial department working under the prime minister's plan for the revival of the economy following the coronavirus-triggered lockdown.
Sharma did his schooling from the Mau district in eastern Uttar Pradesh and post-graduation from Allahabad University. In an official statement, Swatantra Dev Singh also announced the appointments of Archana Mishra from Lucknow and Amit Valmiki from Bulandshahr as secretaries of the state unit.
The BJP on Saturday also announced the appointment of Pranshudatt Dwivedi from Farrukhabad as the chief of BJP Yuva Morcha, Geeta Shakya of Auraiya as party's Mahila Morcha chief, Kameshwar Singh of Gorakhpur as Kisan Morcha chief.
Other leaders who were appointed chiefs of various other cells of the party include Ghaziaba's Narendra Kashyap (Backward Class Morcha), Lucknow's Kaushal Kishor (Morcha chief) Gorakhpur's Sanjay Gond (ST Morcha) and Kunwar Basit Ali (Minority Morcha).