Agra: It`s celebration time in the city of Taj as one of their very own has registered a thumping victory in the UK parliamentary elections. Agra-born Alok Sharma, a Conservative Party candidate, recorded a most impressive swing from Labour to the Tories in Reading West in Berkshire.
Sharma won the seat with a 6,004 majority over Labour`s Naz Sarkar.
At the ancestral Sharmas home in Kothi Meena Bazar area, a prayer ceremony was held after which sweets were distributed.
Sharma`s cousin Vishwanath, a deputy station master at the Raja ki Mandi railway station, said: "In the slightly racial British society, it`s not a joke getting a Conservative Party ticket and doing so well in the polls... getting a record swing."
"Though it`s been a long time since Alok and family left Agra to settle in the UK, they keep visiting us. Alok last visited us in December. He is taking a lot of interest in the family`s charitable hospital coming up in our ancestral village in Aligarh."
Vishwanath revealed that Alok is a very good writer as well.
Cousin Vandana Pathak said: "We are indeed proud of Alok. When Indians do well abroad, it really is a matter of great satisfaction and pride for us all."
Alok`s aunt Shankuntala fondly recalled that "Alok was naughty and when he returned from school he used to play a lots of pranks."
Prem Sharma, Alok`s father, is a doctor and is suffering from heart ailment, the family members here informed.
Born Sep 7, 1967, Alok studied at Normal School and then at Welham in Dehradun before leaving with his parents for London in 1972. Alok`s wife is from Sweden and he has two daughters, according to his relatives in Agra.
Alok is currently a governor of a local primary school in Reading and a keen supporter of local charities. He is also a Fellow of the Royal Society for the advancement of the Arts, Manufacturing and Commerce which, amongst its objectives, supports environmental initiatives which move us towards a zero-waste society.
Previously, he served as a chairman of the political think tank Bow Group`s economic affairs committee.
Alok, a qualified chartered accountant, has a range of work experience from working on a factory production line, being a company auditor, tutoring university students, running a business and advising companies.