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|December 5, 1998||
Controversy has been Jagmohan's second name
Jagmohan has always been dynamic in populist measures.
After being appointed governor of Jammu and Kashmir in March 1984, he was faced with the unpleasant but necessary duty of dismissing two state governments. Thus began the spell of governor's rule that is still being talked about in that border state.
Takeover of the Vaishno Devi shrine earned him the most kudos. He established an independent statutory board which he himself chaired and utilised donations to provide civic amenities to this famous place of pilgrimage.
He cleaned up not only the famous Dal lake but also the administration. His first priority was to save the state from the evil designs of fundamentalists, secessionists and anti-national elements by establishing greater central authority. He was also tough with corruption and inefficiency, sacking or suspending police functionaries up to the level of directors-general.
Jagmohan is the former vice-chairman of the Delhi Development Authority. Earlier, he was commissioner for implementation of Delhi Master Plan and also held various other key assignments in public service.
In 1971, he was conferred the Padmashri for making a significant contribution in the formulation and implementation of the DMP and for playing a pioneer role in planning and implementation of projects. In 1977, he was awarded the Padma Bhushan for his exceptionally meritorious services.
His crusading zeal has often got him enmeshed in controversy during his tenures as the lieutenant-governor of Delhi twice, the governor of Jammu and Kashmir twice and lieutenant governor of Goa, Daman and Diu.
In a published interview, he dismissed the controversy over his role in clearing encroachments and demolishing unauthorised structures during Emergency, for which he had to appear before the Shah Commission.
He explained, ''There was nothing I did during the Emergency which I had not done before. Bulldozers were used after demolishing the slums so that the land could be levelled and construction work started immediately."
The bureaucrat was appointed lieutenant governor of Delhi after the Congress returned to power in the 1980 elections.
On March 31, 1981, he was sent to Goa, Daman and Diu as its lieutenant governor. On September 2, 1982 he was again appointed lieutenant governor of Delhi without the elective set-up.
In 1996, Jagmohan made his entry as an elected MP in a memorable manner, wresting the prized New Delhi seat back for the Bharatiya Janata Party from the Congress and defeating filmstar-turned- politician Rajesh Khanna by over 58,500 votes, a record for this constituency.
In published comments at that time, Jagmohan had said, ''The need of the hour is proper implementation of policies. We are not lacking in planning or policies. There are many and some very good. What is lacking is the implementation of these and so people are bereft of benefits. This is the case everywhere but closer home in Delhi alone the master plan has been there on paper but never adhered to. There are 1,4000 jhuggi clusters and people live in appalling conditions.''
He is a prolific writer and has published many articles in leading newspapers and journals. His book, Rebuilding Shahjaahanabad, the Walled City of Delhi is considered a classic. He was given a cultural award by the Australian government in 1975. In the mid-sixties, he travelled around on a fellowship of the Indian Institute of Public Administration. He also attended two United Nations conferences on human settlement in Teheran and Vancouver.
In 1978, he published another book, Island of Truth.
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