BJP’s Rajya Sabha member from Madhya Pradesh Anil Madhav Dave could not have expected more from Prime Minister Narendra Modi who handed him the environment, forest and climate change ministry, a subject close to his heart.
Dave, 59, who was born and brought up in Madhya Pradesh, started working for the conservation of environment and Narmada River in his middle years. His inclination to the environment cause might have had some political reasons too, but it came as a blessing in disguise for him. Working as one of the chief strategists of the BJP during the assembly and Lok Sabha elections since 2003, he held many posts in the party and was sent to the Rajya Sabha.
He had natural allegiance to the RSS and has been associated with it right from his childhood. His grandfather, fondly known as Dada Dave, was the first president of Jan Sangh of Madhya Bharat prant. Dave was an RSS pracharak till 2003 when he joined politics and became the political advisor to Uma Bharti, who led the party to a spectacular win in the 2003 assembly elections and became the chief minister to dislodge the then chief minister Digvijaya Singh.
While Dave worked for the conservation of Narmada, he got in touch with environmentalists of not only India but the entire world. He held several international conferences on the bank of Narmada at Hoshangabad which were attended by scholars and environmentalists from across the world. It was in the last such conference when the experts decided to work for all the rivers of the country together.
It’s Dave’s plan that the places along Narmada where fairs are organised have structures where women can change their clothes in privacy. He also mooted the idea of river ambulance to provide medical facilities to villagers along the rivers. He is working on a plan on how to minimise the use of fertilizers in agriculture fields along the rivers and motivate the farmers to adopt organic farming.
His associate and youth leader of the BJP Rajneesh Agrawal says, “In the last 10-12 years Anil Dave ji has deeply studied environment not only in India but in the world. He has got great understanding of factors leading to the climate change and how environment can be protected for the mankind without hampering the pace of development. He can strike a fine balance between development and the environment.”