As an IAS officer Ajit Jogi was always collector, writes Nitendra Sharma

A bureaucrat from Madhya Pradesh, who became a political heavyweight in Chhattisgarh, Ajit Jogi passed away on Friday. About Jogi his friends said that he had always been a politician-bureaucrat. Unlike collectors of today, Jogi never shied away from people. Instead, he was always with them, his colleagues said.

Interestingly, as long as he worked as an IAS officer, he remained a collector. In 1986, when he was the collector of Indore, he resigned from his job and joined the Congress. The then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi took interest in bringing him to the Congress.

Since Jogi was promoted, he was posted as managing director of MP State Cooperative Dairy Federation Limited. Nevertheless, Jogi resigned from his job even before getting relieving letter from Indore. Jogi was the collector in Sidhi, Shahdol, Gwalior, Raipur and Indore.

Jogi was a 1968-batch IPS officer and a1970-batch IAS officer. When he was selected in the IAS he resigned from the police service.

In 1968, Jogi who stood first in the final year examination of Maulana Azad Institute of Technology (MANIT) was selected in the IPS the same year.

He became friends with many people when he studied in Bhopal and when he worked as IPS and IAS officer.

His batch mates in the IAS were well-known in MP. They are late LK Joshi, K Shankernarayanan, Vijay Singh, Ajit Raizada, KK Chakraborty, Manoj Kumar, S Lakshminarayanan, SC Majumdar and Robert Hrangadwala. All of them were 1970-batch IAS officers.

A senior journalist Girjashanker said Jogi was different from others as an officer and as a politician.

According to Girjashanker, the collectors of today should learn from what Jogi had done.

As long as he lived in the collector’s bungalow, he himself picked the phone, so everyone could easily send his message to him. Jogi had instructed his staffers that nobody should be stopped from meeting him even at night.

The popularity Jogi had earned as collector benefitted him as politician.

A batch mate Jogi, Ajit Raizada said Jogi was a dynamic officer, and he always earned popularity as collector. It was a coincidence that when Jogi was the collector in Indore, Raizada was the collector in Ujjain.

Raizada said he never knew that his friend would resign from the job, join politics and become chief minister.