This former MLA and ex-minister of the previous Kamal Nath government is roaming barefoot in the blistering heat of Gwalior, Madhya Pradesh. He has pledged to resolve the issues being faced by the constituency, primarily of potable water shortage.
Until that is done, Pradhuman Singh Tomar will not don footwear.
A staunch loyalist of Jyotiraditya Scindia, Tomar had joined the Bharatiya Janata Party after his political idol deserted Congress in March this year. He had not only resigned from MP assembly but had also shunned his ministerial berth. Sources say that among other Scindia loyalists, Tomar is hopeful of a cabinet berth in the Shivraj Singh Chouhan government.
However, this is not the first time Tomar has caught eyeballs with his actions. Most recently, after his son misbehaved with policemen in Gwalior, the former minister was quick to make his kin repent. He made his son apologise to the personnel and as penance for his actions, made him clean public toilets and garden the next day.
He has often also been spotted sweeping roads and cleaning drains in the Gwalior region.
But his political opponents allege that Tomar merely craves publicity and often resorts to such gimmicks to hog the limelight. A senior Congress leader said he is doing this to garner attention amid talks of cabinet expansion in the state.
Tomar represented the Gwalior assembly constituency and this barefoot pledge of his also comes at a time when the seat has fallen vacant due to his resignation and a bypoll is awaited.
He had previously said that if he is offered a ministerial berth, he would reach Raj Bhavan barefooted to take his oath, saying that the public’s pain should be on display, everywhere.
With inputs from Sushil Kaushik in Gwalior.