March 30, 2020

Interview Times

Inspiring The Young At Heart

From ivory towers to Temple of Democracy

From ivory towers to Temple of Democracy
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By, Charan Singh

Dr. Sujeet Kumar, BJD Rajya Sabha nominee

Seated in his office, letting his locks of hair down, little could Dr. Sujeet Kumar(From ivory towers to Temple of Democracy) realize that a buzz on his phone could script the transformation in his life. Moments of conversation on the phone proved to be immensely gratifying for Kumar, professionally.

Once the disillusioned corporate honcho in the USA, Sujeet Kumar(From ivory towers to Temple of Democracy) has now earned the passport to the temple of Indian democracy. He is one of the four candidates handpicked by BJD supremo Naveen Patnaik for the Rajya Sabha berths.

If you yearn for something earnestly, the whole constellation conspires to get it achieved for you. The adage could not be truer for Dr. Kumar.

Hailing from Kalahandi, one of Odisha’s most economically impaired districts streaming into newsrooms for gnawing poverty and starvation deaths, Kumar’s career has taken a giant leap.

And, it has been made possible by the dint of sheer hard work and his affable manners.

Although it has been a roller coaster journey since 2012 when he(From ivory towers to Temple of Democracy) was introduced to the Chief Minister of Odisha Naveen Pattnaik, Kumar has given many breakthroughs to the BJD.

The BJD got a big jolt in 2017 when the rival BJP breathed down the neck of the ruling party in the panchayat elections. It was a big wakeup call for the redoubtable political grouping.

Then, came the emergence of the master strategist. Taking the mantle on his shoulder, Dr. Kumar(From ivory towers to Temple of Democracy), with his colleagues launched multi-pronged strategies at different levels.

In fact, Dr. Kumar, pioneering the IT-based branding of the BJD, made sure that the seismic shift was palpable on the ground.

The campaign nudged Dr. Kumar to spend quality time with people from 65 constituencies, largely from the western and southern districts of Odisha.

In that process, not only did he understand the pulse of the people but also got the hang of some process impurities inducing people not being able to identify the brand symbol of the BJD “Conch”.

Deploying the time-honored management principle, imbibed from The Oxford University and The Harvard Business School as a management student into practice, Dr. Kumar(From ivory towers to Temple of Democracy) consolidated the BJD’s vote share in different districts of Odisha through his multi-level awareness campaign.

So much so that in the 2019 elections, the BJD could topple the Modi tsunami and emerge as the single largest party in Odisha, thanks to the robust campaign mechanism spearheaded by Dr. Kumar.

Branding himself a political entrepreneur, Dr. Kumar(From ivory towers to Temple of Democracy) is highly indebted to the BJD. He believes, working with the stalwarts of the BJD and some exceptional bureaucrats in the policymaking circle gave a very enriching experience.

Expressing his elation at the recent development of his Rajya Sabha nomination, Dr. Kumar acknowledges the significant role played by Naveen Pattnaik in his nomination.

He also reckons, Mr. Pattnaik is not only intelligent and hardworking but also doting and caring. Indeed, Mr. Pattnaik fosters all his colleagues and rewards them based on their performance.

Sharing his secret to success on the political front, Dr. Sujeet Kumar(From ivory towers to Temple of Democracy) reveals that working with the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Geneva and his stint with the U.S foreign ministry think tank in Hawai played a vital role in sharpening the thought process while making a decision.

Despite achieving a lot for himself and for the BJD, Dr. Kumar shows exemplary modesty by giving the credit to the good work done by the BJD government over the years.

Branding schemes and projects and making that sound appeal to people is the fulcrum of a state government’s popularity.

Dr. Kumar believes that the center is way ahead on this front yet he emphasized the state government is not far behind courtesy the robust mechanism in place.

Dr. Kumar(From ivory towers to Temple of Democracy) strongly believes despite headwinds like economy going into a tailspin, and coronavirus pandemic affecting the mining industry in the state, Odisha is poised for growth as the government has found its groove in the form of the tourism economy, sports economy and massive push in infrastructure projects.

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