Sudheendra Kulkarni – IIT Bombay


Sudheendra Kulkarni is an Indian politician and columnist.

Kulkarni was educated at Jadhavji Anandji High School in Athani, a town in Belgaum district, Karnataka, India. He then attended the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay.

A former member of the Communist Party of India (Marxist), Kulkarni joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in 1996. Of this ideological switch he said, “People like me were living in an illusory land. I realised very late in my life that the Marxist ideology is not suitable in India – in fact, I would say it is unsuitable for any corner of the world.”

Kulkarni worked as executive editor for[when?] Blitz, a Mumbai-based tabloid format weekly that was edited and owned by Russi Karanjia. According to Kulkarni, Karanjia was sympathetic to the communist movement in India but became disillusioned with it and its anti-Hindu secularism. He became a strong sympathiser of the BJP and the Ayodhya movement, which led to Kulkarni being appointed in place of P. Sainath as deputy editor. Kulkarni was tasked with having Blitz reflect Karanjia’s new-found sympathies. Kulkarni then transformed Blitz from a left-wing newspaper into a BJP-oriented publication.

Kulkarni resigned from the BJP in 2009. The electoral defeat suffered by the party, led by Advani, had effectively ended his role with the party and he had also become disenchanted with the influence exerted by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh on party decision-making. In January 2012, he was reported to be once more working full-time for the BJP, on this occasion as an advisor to its president, Nitin Gadkari.

Cash for votes scandal:
In 2008, a sting operation was carried out that involved Kulkarni and another BJP activist. Later televised and known as the “cash-for-votes scandal”, the operation purported to show a bribe of 10 million rupees being offered to three BJP MPs on behalf of the Indian National Congress-led United Progressive Alliance government.

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