I am missing a woman in beautiful saree with a big bindi on the forehead and a vibrant smile. It’s been a year but I still can’t believe that she is no more. She was the most loved, most respected, and most admired politician of India, with a very clean and decent image among people. Even followers of other parties adore her. Yes, our beloved Sushma Swaraj Ji was one such strong and popular leader.

She did justice to every post she held in her forty-year long political career, whether it is “External affairs Minister” or leader of opposition in Parliament. She also served as Minister of parliamentary affairs, Minister of health and family welfare, Minister of information and broadcasting, and Chief Minister of Delhi. She also served as minister in Haryana state Government. She became the youngest cabinet minister of the state of Haryana at the age of 25 in 1977. She was the first woman chief minister of Delhi and the first women spokesperson of a national party in the country.

She performed excellently as the External Affairs Minister of India. Her role in resolving the Doklam standoff issue will be remembered. Apart from this, she handled several strategically sensitive issues. She helped millions of Indians living around the world. People could easily reach out to her on social media, and she was appreciated a lot for her quick response towards needy people. She was described as “3 AM tweet mantra”. She was also known for her witty tweets. Her fluency over Hindi is Well-known but knowledge of Sanskrit language is also very impressive. 

She was best known for her excellent oratory skills and interest in poetry. Even opposition leaders used to praise her for keeping her point in a very strong way. She delivered an excellent speech in 1996 to oppose vote of confidence against Atal Bihari Vajpayi’s 13 day government. She attacked with these lines to the people who accused BJP to be communal “Yes Mr Speaker, we are communal, because we advocate the singing of Vande Matram, Yes, we are communal, because we fight for the respect of the national flag, we are communal, because we want to abolish Article 370, we are communal, because we want to put an end to discrimination based on caste and creed in this country, yes we are communal, because we want to get the Uniform Civil Code (Saman Nagrik Samhita) implemented in this country.” She addressed 71st and 73rd session of UNGA.  She also spoke against Pakistan and said terror and talk cannot go together with Pakistan. Exchange of Urdu couplets with Manmohan Singh in 2013 over corruption charges is one of the memorable of her in Parliament.  

Apart from political relationships, Shushma Ji was also known for her personal relationships with leaders across party lines. She used to tie Rakhi to Vice President Mr. M. Venkaiah Naidu. He posted an emotional tweet with a picture of him and Sushma Ji on this Rakshabandhan.

Sushma Ji was also very close to BJP stalwarts L. K. Advani and Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Even after being political arch-rivals, Sushma Ji shared a warm personal relationship with Soniya Gandhi and Sheila Dixit. She is also known to share a warm relationship with her foreign counterparts.

I have been following Mr. Swaraj Kaushal on social media for quite sometimes now.  I got to know about the cordial relationship that Sushma Ji and Mr. Swaraj shared. She got married to him in 1975 and it was a love marriage which was a very rare thing at that time in Haryana. Only very few people are aware of Swaraj in her name,  Swaraj is the name of her husband Mr. Swaraj Kaushal. Mr. Swaraj Kaushal is a Supreme Court Lawyer, and he served as a Governor of Mizoram state from 1990-1993. He also served as M. P. from 1998-2004.

Governor Swaraj Kaushal posted several times about Sushma Ji in the last one year; he mentioned how wonderful life partner and mother Sushma Ji was. In one of his posts, he mentioned how Sushma Ji took care of her old and ailing mother-in-law for two years, even after her busy schedule. In an interview, Sushma Ji herself said, if I am in town I always make to have lunch with my husband irrespective of my busy schedule. When Sushma Ji decided not to contest the election in 2019, Mr. Swaraj thanked her and wrote an emotional tweet thread. He was happy that the marathon of Sushma Ji in politics came to end and now they will spend a good time together. But destiny was cruel for them and very soon Sushma Ji left for her heavenly journey.

She was a tough political fighter but admired and respected across the party line. She is ideal for millions of people. She is the epitome of true women empowerment. She was known to have a soft corner for female colleagues but did not wear feminism on her sleeve. Sushma Ji will be remembered as fearless, confident, honest, and people’s politician today and every day.

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