Vishnu Deo Sai : Tribal Leader To Take Oath As Chhatisgarh CM

The journey of tribal leader Vishnu Deo Sai to the position of Chhattisgarh Chief Minister reflects the typical path of grassroots leaders beginning with internships on the political front lines, enduring challenges at the panchayat level, and then ascending the hierarchy to establish credibility on the larger stage. Sai’s calm demeanor, ability to avoid controversies, organizational skills, and strong connection with his tribal roots were key factors in the BJP’s decision to choose him for the state’s top post.

Vishnu Deo Sai To Be The 2nd Tribal CM Of Chhatisgarh

At 59 years old, Sai, an MLA from the Kunkuri (ST) constituency in North Chhattisgarh, becomes the second tribal leader in the state, following Ajit Jogi, who achieved the same feat in November 2000. Despite being replaced as the state BJP president last year, Sai, a former Union Minister, now leads the state, recognized as one of the most widely accepted leaders within the state unit by BJP members.

Union Home Minister Amit Shah had hinted at Sai’s elevation during a poll rally, promising to make him a “bada aadmi” (big man) if the BJP secured victory. A four-time Lok Sabha MP, Sai served as Chhattisgarh BJP chief three times and, despite a premature end to his last term, was appointed to the BJP national executive in July this year.

Coming from the Surguja tribal belt in North Chhattisgarh, Sai’s appointment underscores the central leadership’s emphasis on honoring seniority and the ability to unite various sections of the party. Born in Jashpur district to a politically active family, Sai’s political journey began in the 1980s, progressing from gram panchayat elections to representing the Tapkara constituency in the Madhya Pradesh Assembly.

Journey From Lok Sabha Wins And Assembly Defeats To CM Chair

Elected to the Lok Sabha four times from Raigarh (1999-2019), Sai became a Union minister when the BJP government led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi took office in 2014. Despite being denied a party ticket in 2019, Sai continued to play a crucial role in Chhattisgarh politics.

After losing the Chhattisgarh Assembly elections in 2003 and 2008, Sai secured victory in the Kunkuri seat in the Surguja division in the recent elections. The BJP’s success in tribal regions, winning all 14 seats in Surguja and eight of the 12 seats in the southern tribal belt of Bastar, significantly contributed to the party’s overall tally of 54 out of 90 seats, dealing a blow to the Congress’s chances of retaining power.

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