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PHOTOS: Who gets what in Modi's council of ministers

Last updated on: May 27, 2014 11:56 IST

PHOTOS: Who gets what in Modi's council of ministers

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday evening took oath along with 45-member council of ministers.

The council of ministers included 23 Cabinet ministers, 10 ministers of state with independent charge and 13 ministers of state.

However, the Rashtrapati Bhavan announced the portfolios only on Tuesday.

PM Modi keeps with himself personnel, public grievances and pensions, department of atomic energy and department of space portfolios, and is also inc-charge of all important policy issues and all other portfolios not allocated to any minister.

Complete Coverage: PM Namo!

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Image: India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi takes his oath at the presidential palace in New Delhi India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi takes his oath at the presidential palace in New Delhi
Photographs: Adnan Abidi/Reuters

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Rajnath Singh, Cabinet minister

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The BJP president gets the all-important Home portfolio.

Singh, the teacher-turned politician, is returning to government in a seamless journey from a party president, under whose stewardship the BJP has returned to power with highest ever tally.

62-year-old Singh, who steadfastly announced Modi's name as BJP's Prime Ministerial candidate despite opposition from seniors like L K Advani, is going to be one of the trusted lieutenants of Prime Minister Modi with a major say in the functioning of the government.

Singh, a two-term BJP president, rose from a BJP activists in Gorakhpur, where he taught physics in a local college, to Chief Minister of politically crucial Uttar Pradesh and then Transport and Agriculture Minister in Atal Bihar Vajpayee government.

His rise in politics has been gradual and steady during which he had been BJP chief from 2006 to 2009 and earned the reputation of being an able administrator as Union Minister and Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh.

Elected to Lok Sabha from Lucknow, Singh has emerged from the ranks as a political heavyweight in the party largely due to his proximity to BJP's spiritual mentor RSS.

After taking over BJP's reins for the first time from Advani in December 2005, Singh sought to rebuild the party by focusing on basic Hindutva ideologies and said there would be "no compromise" on building the Ram Temple in Ayodhya.

However, he not only failed to steer the party to power in the 2009 general elections but BJP's poll tally dropped by 22 seats compared to 2004 Lok Sabha polls.

Born on July 10, 1951 at Bhabhaura village in Uttar Pradesh's Chandauli district, Singh obtained MSc in physics from Gorakhpur University and was appointed lecturer in the K B Post degree college in Mirzapur in 1971.

Singh's association with Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh began in 1964 when he was only 13 year old. Even as lecturer he remained attached to RSS.

Rising step by step, he began his political innings with BJP's student wing Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad in 1969 as its organising secretary in Gorakhpur and rose to become the secretary of the then Bharatiya Jan Sangh's Mirzapur unit in 1974.

During the Emergency, Singh joined Jaiprakash Narayan's movement and was arrested in July 1975 before being released in 1977.

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Arun Jaitley, Cabinet minister

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The senior BJP leader gets Finance, Corporate Affairs and Defence.

Few people in the central leadership of BJP could claim to have the ears of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Arun Jaitley can.

Jaitley, 61, defended Modi vigrously when future appeared uncertain for the then Gujarat Chief Minister following 2002 riots and played a crucial rule in his rise to the top when voices of discontent, led by the likes L K Advani, grew louder.

And it is also an evidence of Modi's faith in him that despite his loss in Lok Sabha elections, the legal luminary was always being seen as a certainty in the Modi cabinet for a high profile ministry.

More of a strategist than a grassroots politician, Jaitley was a key helmsman in the party's 2014 campaign, now being recognised for its brilliance by even opponents, and was its key voice as the Modi juggernaut rolled on.

Through his blogposts, he keenly defended the personalised electioneering around Modi when other veterans like Sushma Swaraj, Murli Manohar Joshi besides Advani seemed to demur and even took gentle swipes at party leaders, including Sushma, when they disapproved of inclusion of tainted leaders like B S Yeddyurappa.

His detractors, though, would say his adroit political calculations were of not much personal help. He chose to fight his maiden Lok Sabha election from Amritsar and lost to Congress bigwig Amarinder Singh.

In the first BJP government under Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Jaitley was appointed Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting (Independent Charge) and later headed Disinvestment ministry (Independent Charge), a new ministry created for to give effect to the policy of disinvestments.

He was the first Minister of Shipping following the bifurcation of the Ministry of Surface Transport and later headed Law & Justice where he gave shape to the policy of judicial reforms.

Seen as an articulate face of the party who is as much at ease in advocating market reforms as defending the traditional, at times orthodox, world view of the larger Sangh parivar, the senior Supreme Court lawyer at heart is a modernist who shares Modi's dictum of "minimum government, maximum governance".

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Nitin Gadkari, Cabinet minister

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The former BJP president will head the mega Transport portfolio consisting of road transport, highways and shipping.

Firmly ensconced as a key member of Narendra Modi's core group, Nitin Gadkari, who earned the distinction of being the youngest BJP president, is known as an able administrator with innovative approaches.

A first-timer in Lok sabha, Gadkari, 57, has had a long innings in Maharashtra as minister and Leader of Opposition in Maharashtra Legislative Council besides working at the national level in different capacities.
Born into a middle class agricultural family in Nagpur, he is hit the spotlight for giving his city a new face through his development work and also earned the nick-name of 'flyover man during his stint as the PWD minister for building a series of flyovers in Mumbai.

The success of the Mumbai-Pune expressessway also brought him fame, with the then Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee asking him to launch the national highway authority.

Gadkari was elected to the Lok Sabha from Nagpur, a traditional Congress stronghold, defeating seven time winner Vilas Mutthemwar by a margin of about three lakh vote.

The BJP-Shiv Sena combine has won 42 out of the 48 seats in Maharashtra, including all the ten seats in the Vidarbha region.

Inspired in his early life by the RSS, Gadkari entered politics as a student leader of ABVP and later joined the Janta Yuva Morcha, youth wing of the BJP.

The imposition of emergency by Indira Gandhi in June 1975 was a turning point in his life, following which he decided to dedicate his life to social work rather than practicing law.

Gadkari studied M.Com, LLB and diploma in business management.

As a PWD Minister between 1995 and 1999, he gained first experience to undertake infrastructure projects. He is quoted as having said that with Rs five, he earned the distinction of completing works worth Rs 8000 crore. He often recalls this unique distinction he earned as PWD minister.

He has promoted water management, solar energy projects and the use of modern technology and management tools in agriculture.    

Married to Kanchan Gadkari, they have three children.

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Sushma Swaraj, Cabinet minister

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The former Leader of Opposition in Lok Sabha becomes the first woman to head the external affairs and overseas India affairs portfolios.

The induction of Sushma Swaraj, who was seen as a dissenter after Narendra Modi was declared BJP's Prime Ministerial candidate, is an acknowledgment of her stature and capabilities and who could not be overlooked.

62-year-old Swaraj was long being spoken about as the brightest second generation politician to lead BJP but the leader of opposition in the outgoing Lok Sabha was caught off-guard, like many others including her mentor L K Advani, by the Modi phenomenon.

While many joined the chorus and many others still reconciled to Modi's elevation, she remained a voice of caution and at times dissent.

Whether it was the declaration of Modi as the party's campaign committee chief in June, 2013, or his subsequent elevation as its prime ministerial candidate in September last, she chose to throw her weight with the discontent of Advani but did not take a public stand like her mentor.

But it appears that the party's grand victory coupled with her own impressive win from Vidisha constituency and the need to put up an united front have ironed out Modi's misgivings, if any, about her.

She too spoke about Modi's "able leadership" and met him a couple of times during the parleys among top party leaders over the government formation.

An articulate speaker who can speak in chaste Hindi as well as English with equally felicity, the daughter of a RSS worker is also in the good grace of the Sangh top brass due to her strong espousal of swadesi and other familiar causes.

She had vowed in 2004 to shave her head if Italy-born Congress President Sonia Gandhi became the Prime Minister. Her emotive stand won her admirers among the nationalist hardliners even though it did not come to pass after Gandhi's decision to opt out.

She had also contested against Gandhi from Bellary in 1999 and learned to speak in Kannada. She lost by over 56,000 votes but her spirited campaign added to her stature.

Swaraj has been elected seven times as a Member of Parliament and three times as a Member of the Legislative Assembly. She also has the distinction of becoming the youngest cabinet minister at 25 in Haryana.

Swaraj began her political career with RSS student wing ABVP in the 1970s. Member of the Haryana Assembly from 1977 to 1982 from Ambala Cantonment, she was sworn in as a Cabinet Minister in Devi Lal government.

She became Janta Party's State President in Haryana at the age of 27 and went on to become education Minister in the BJP–Lok Dal coalition government during 1987–90.

Later, she entered Rajya Sabha and was subsequently elected to the 11th Lok Sabha from South Delhi constituency in 1996.

She was Cabinet Minister for Information and Broadcasting during the 13-day Atal Bihari Vajpayee government in 1996.

She resigned from the Cabinet in the next Vajpayee regime to take over as the first female Chief Minister of Delhi in October 1998. Though it could not save the party from a humiliating loss in the state assembly. She was later made Health minister in the Union government.

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Venkaiah Naidu, Cabinet minister

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The former BJP president gets urban development, housing and urban poverty alleviation and parliamentary affairs portfolios.

An astute leader, inspiring orator and a committed party worker, M Venkaiah Naidu became the BJP president in 2002 and is among the party's prominent faces from southern India.

This is his second stint as a Union Minister, after heading the Rural Development Ministry in the year 2000.

Hailing from a a remote village named Chavatapalem in Nellore district of Andhra Pradesh, the 65-year-old leader is a Rajya Sabha member from neighbouring Karnataka.

After graduating from V R College, Nellore, he obtained law degree from Andhra University at Visakhapatnam. He was also the president of Students Union, Andhra University Colleges in 1973.

Commencing his political journey as president of the youth wing of Janata Party in Andhra Pradesh, he has held a number of positions in BJP. He was elected twice to the Legislative Assembly in Andhra Pradesh and to the Rajya Sabha three times.

An experienced Parliamentarian, Naidu was a member of various Standing Committees including External Affairs and Finance. Presently, he is the Vice-President of the Parliamentary Forum on Disaster Management.

Naidu was a Union Minister of Rural Development between September 30, 2000 and June 30, 2002 in Atal Bihari Vajpayee government. Later he functioned as the national President of BJP from July 2002 to October 2004.

 

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Sadananda Gowda, Cabinet minister

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The former Karnataka chief minister gets the railways portfolio.

Beginning his political career as a member of the Jan Sangh in late 1970s, former Karnataka Chief Minister D V Sadananda Gowda makes his ministerial debut at the Centre.

The ever-smiling 61-year Gowda earned national prominence being the President of the Karnataka unit of BJP when the party won the Assembly elections for the first time in South India in May 2008.

Gowda, who became a member of the BJP in Karnataka after the split of the Janata Party, rose to Chief Ministership in 2011.

Being active in politics since his College days, Gowda was a leader of the ABVP before becoming a member of the Jan Sangh. He was the party's youth wing Yuva Morcha state secretary (1983-88), state BJP secretary (2003-04) and National Secretary of the party (2004).

Mentored by BJP strong-man B S Yeddyurappa, Gowda was elected to the Karnataka Legislative Assembly in 1994 and 1999 from the Puttur Assembly Constituency in Dakshina Kannada.  He became Deputy Leader of the Opposition in his second term as MLA.

Gowda, an eminent administrator and a key policy-maker, has served in various committees of the Karnataka State Legislature including the Cell for preparing Draft Bill on prohibiting Atrocities on Women, the Committee of  Energy, Fuel and Power, and the Committee for Public Undertaking.

He was nominated as the President of the Public Accounts Committee in 2003.

Gowda was elected to the 14th Lok Sabha in 2004 from the Mangalore Lok Sabha Constituency, defeating senior Congress leader Veerappa Moily by a margin of 32,314 votes.

In 2009, the party shifted him to Udupi-Chikmagalur Constituency. In Parliament, he was on the Committee on Science and Technology, Environment and Forests.

In the 14th Lok Sabha, he was a member of the Committee on Commerce. Government of India had appointed him as Director of Coffee Board during January 2005.

In 2006, Gowda was appointed as President of Karnataka State BJP. He earned National Prominence being the President when BJP won the assembly election for the first time in South India in May 2008.

Gowda was elected to the 15th Lok Sabha from Udupi Chikmagalur constituency before he became the chief minister of Karnataka.

He was chosen as the Chief Minister of Karnataka in August 2011 following the resignation of his mentor Yeddyurappa.

As Chief Minister, he strived hard to improve the image of his party that had been tarnished due to allegations of corruption. He introduced various schemes such as Sakaala, aimed at providing time bound services at government offices.   

Gowda was later replaced by Jagadish Shettar.

After suffering big loss in May 2013 elections, BJP elected Gowda as the opposition leader of legislative council in Karnataka.

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Uma Bharti, Cabinet minister

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The firebrand leader gets water resources, river development and Ganga rejuvenation portfolios.

A firebrand leader and Hindutva mascot, Uma Bharti has always hogged the limelight whether she was with BJP or out of it.

This is the second time that the saffron clad leader, often referred to as 'sadhvi', has become a Union minister in an NDA government.

Raised by Vijaya Raje Scindia of Gwalior, 55-year-old Bharti, who is a former Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister, became involved with the Bharatiya Janata Party at a very young age.

Her first electoral battle came in 1984 when she contested the Lok Sabha elections. Her first electoral victory in Lok Sabha polls came in 1989 when she won from Khajuraho in Madhya Pradesh. She retained it in 1991, 1996 and 1998.

In 1999, she switched constituencies and won the Bhopal seat. In the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government, she held various portfolios as Minister of State and Cabinet Minister, including that of Human Resource Development, Tourism,  Youth Affairs and Sports.

A member of the UP legislative assembly, this time Bharti contested from Jhansi in UP and defeated her nearest rival from Samajwadi Party by a margin of nearly two lakh votes.

Actively involved in the 'Ramjanmabhoomi' movement, she has been named in the Liberhan Commission report on the demolition of the Babri mosque at the disputed site in Ayodhya.

Known for her fiery speeches, her association with the temple movement placed her prominently in the BJP alongside party veterans L K Advani and Murli Manohar Joshi.

Bharti was anointed the Chief Ministerial candidate of the BJP for the 2003 assembly polls in Madhya Pradesh.

On the back of a fierce campaign based on a plank of development, and helped by her reputation as a Hindutva firebrand, she led the party to a three-fourth majority in the state assembly.

In August 2004, after only a year in office, an arrest warrant was issued against Uma Bharti in connection with the 1994 Hubli riots, forcing her to step down as CM.

In November 2004, she had a public spat with Advani during a meeting at the BJP headquarters here.

This led to her suspension from the party, which was revoked a few months later reportedly at the insistence of the RSS. As she continued to publicly defy the BJP high command, insisting that she replace Shivraj Singh Chouhan as the Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh, Bharti was eventually expelled.

She floated her own political party, the Bharatiya Janshakti Party. She stated that her party followed the ideology of the RSS. But her outfit achieved little success.

She was re-inducted in the BJP in June 2011 and was tasked with reviving the party in Uttar Pradesh ahead of the assembly election in 2012.

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Najma Heptullah, Cabinet minister

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The former Rajya Sabha deputy chairperson gets the minority affairs portfolio.

Grand-niece of eminent freedom fighter Maulana Abdul Kalam Azad, Najma Heptullah is the lone Muslim face in the Narendra Modi Cabinet.

Once a prominent Congress member in the Rajya Sabha, she left the party in 2004 due to a strain in relationship with top party leaders for her close association with the Atal Bihari Vajpayee-headed NDA Government and joined the BJP.

Heptullah, who was reelected to the Upper House five times between 1986 and 2012, was elected to a one-year term as the deputy chairman of the Rajya Sabha in 1985, and she again served in that post from late 1988 to mid-2004.

Rising quickly in the BJP leadership, she was fielded by the party as a candidate for the post of Vice President against the UPA nominee, Hamid Ansari. She, however, lost the election.

When Nitin Gadkari became the President of the BJP in 2010, she was appointed as one of the 13 vice presidents of the party.

She had almost lost prominence in the BJP when Rajnath Singh became new chief of the party.

Heptullah was dropped from the post of BJP vice president and was made a member of the party's national executive.

An eminent writer, Heptullah has published several research papers in foreign and Indian journals and also contributed to many Indian and foreign magazines on issues relating to women and social development.

74-year-old Heptullah, has also worked as a member of the Advisory Committee and Editorial Board of 'The Indian Journal of Zoology' and 'Journal of Anatomy'.

Born in Bhopal, she is married and has three daughters. She holds both a Masters' of Science Degree in Zoology, and a Ph.D. in Cardiac Anatomy from the University of Denver.

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Gopinath Munde, Cabinet minister

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The BJP strongman from Beed gets rural development, Panchayti Raj and drinking water and sanitation portfolios.

A former Deputy Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Gopinath Munde, the OBC face of BJP in the state, makes his entry in the Union cabinet for the first time.

Munde, who was the Deputy Leader of Opposition in 15th Lok Sabha, won this time despite NCP chief Sharad Pawar making the Beed seat a prestige issue.

With Munde being a known detractor of Pawar in state politics, Pawar launched his poll campaign from Beed in favour of NCP nominee Suresh Dhus whose challenged collapsed despite Munde's nephew Dhananjay being his campaign manager.

A five time MLA, Munde's heart has always been in the state politics and harbours the ambition of becoming first BJP Chief Minister of Maharashtra.

A brother-in-law of slain BJP leader Pramod Mahajan, Munde hails from a poor family in the backward Marathwada region and was brought into politics by the late BJP leader Vasantrao Bhagwat, who also groomed several other youngsters including Pramod Mahajan.

A general secretary of the party at the national level, he was Chairman of the Committee on Chemicals and Fertilisers in last Lok Sabha.

He has wife and three daughters and one of them- Pankaja Palave- represents the Parli assembly seat.

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Kalraj Mishra, Cabinet minister

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The senior BJP leader gets micro, small and medium enterprises portfolio.

A Sangh pracharak and an associate of Jayaprakash Narayan, Kalraj Mishra, a veteran of Uttar Pradesh politics, is making his ministerial debut at the Centre.

71-year-old Mishra began his political career as a pracharak of RSS in Gorakhpur in eastern UP  in 1963.

As his association with the then Jan Sangh grew, he was appointed as organising secretary, Bharatiya Jana Sangh at Azamgarh Centre in 1968.

He became influenced with the JP Movement and worked as a convenor of 'Sampurna Kranti' (Total Revolution) started by Jayaprakash Narayan in eastern Uttar Pradesh in 1974.

He was a political detainee and was kept in the Deoria jail during Emergency.

As his political graph grew, the Masters degree holder from Kashi Vidhyapeeth in Varanasi was elected National President of the All India Janata Yuva Morcha, a youth organisation of Janata Party in 1978.

He was elected to the Rajya Sabha on three occasions -- first in 1980, then 1986 and later in August 2001.

He has been chief of the BJP's UP unit and a member of the state Legislative Council.

During BJP's rule in Uttar Pradesh, he has been a Cabinet minister in the state government.

As a Minister of Public Works and Tourism, Mishra is credited with formulating the Road Development Policy in Uttar Pradesh. Several link roads were constructed in a number of villages under the Dindayal Link Road Scheme'.

He also led a campaign of making state highways pothole free. The campaign was carried forward by successive state governments.

As a minister in the state government, Mishra also worked with a committee for creation of Uttarakhand which was carved out of UP.

In the 2012 assembly elections, Mishra was elected from the Lucknow East seat.

He contested the just-concluded Lok Sabha elections from Deoria and defeated his nearest BSP rival by a margin of 2.65 lakh votes.

He has the distinction of introducing 16 Private Member's Bill in the Upper House, including the one to regulate the sale of acid and providing compulsory medical treatment to people in emergencies.

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Maneka Gandhi, Cabinet minister

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The BJP leader gets women and child development portfolio.

Animal-rights activist Maneka Gandhi made a comeback to the union cabinet as the only member of the Gandhi family in the BJP-led government.

The seven-time MP and younger daughter-in-law of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, Maneka Sanjay Gandhi was also in the council of ministers during the previous NDA government under Atal Bihari Vajpayee as the first Animal Welfare Minister of the country.

 In just-concluded Lok Sabha election, Maneka won from the Pilibhit constituency by a margin of over 3 lakh votes.

Maneka Gandhi joined active politics after the death of her husband Sanjay Gandhi in an air crash in 1980 and floated her own political outfit in March 1983 after she fell-out with her mother-in-law.

However, she had lost the 1984 Lok Sabha elections from Amethi and lost to former Prime Minister and her brother-in-law Rajiv Gandhi.

Though Maneka Gandhi was part of the NDA government under Vajpayee, she joined BJP officially only in 2004.

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+Ananth Kumar, Cabinet minister

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The BJP MP from Bangalore South gets chemical and fertilisers portfolio.

Kumar, once considered close to party patriarch L K Advani, is from the RSS stable and is known for his political adroitness with his ears close to the ground.

Kumar became a sixth time Lok Sabha member from Bangalore South, defeating Congress candidate and IT Czar Nandan Nilekani by a margin of 2,28,575 votes in what had appeared to be a keen contest that would throw up a challenge to him.

Born in a middleclass Brahmin family on 22 July 1959, 55- year-old Kumar is a Law graduate from Mysore University.

Kumar, who was also actively involved with Akhila Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad, has served in various positions including as State Secretary and later National Secretary of the Parishad in 1985.

Joining BJP in 1987, Kumar served as State President of BJP Yuva Morcha in his first assignment. He was appointed as General Secretary of the party in 1995 and got elected to the Lok Sabha for the first time in 1996 from Bangalore South and not looked back in his parliamentary career since then.

Kumar served as Minister for Civil Aviation in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee cabinet. He had also seved in various ministeries like Tourism, Sports & Youth Affairs, Culture, Urban Development and Poverty Alleviation during the NDA rule.

Gregarious with strong political instincts, Kumar has managed to be in the innner circle of central leadership- be it during the heydays of Vajpayee or Advani and now Modi.

Both Kumar and BJP strongman Yeddyurappa are known for their politically hostile relationship and he often faced accusations of meddling too much in Karnataka affairs particularly when the Lingayat strongman was Chief Minister.

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Ravi Shankar Prasad, Cabinet minister

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The BJP leader gets communications and information technology, and law and justice portfolios.

Ravishankar Prasad, one of the most articulate BJP leaders and a familiar face in TV debates, returns to the union cabinet with a bagful of experience having been in charge of various portfolios for four years under Atal Bihari Vajpayee government.

Ravishankar Prasad began his political career as a fiery student leader in Patna University under the leadership of Lalu Prasad, who was then its general secretary but it was natural for him to turn to BJP as his father Thakur Prasad, himself a prominent lawyer, was one of the founding members of Jan Sangh.   

Born in an upper caste Kayastha family on August 30, 1954, Ravishankar did his graduation and obtained masters in Political Science and LLB degree from Patna University.

Ravishankar started off as a student leader in 1970s organising protests against Indira Gandhi's government. He took an active part in 1974 JP movement and was jailed during the Emergency.

During his college days, he was Assistant General Secretary of Patna University Students Union with Lalu Prasad as the President.

Practising law at Patna High Court since 1980, he was designated senior advocate at Patna High Court in 1999 and senior advocate of the Supreme Court in 2000.

Prasad was the main lawyer who argued on a PIL against RJD chief Lalu Prasad in multi-crore rupee fodder scam case. He also represented BJP veteran L K Advani in hawala case. In 2010, Prasad was a lawyer in the longstanding Ayodhya title suit and appeared before the Allahabad High Court.

Prasad was made Union Minister of State for Coal and Mines in 2000 in Vajpayee ministry and was given additional charge as MOS of Law and Justice in July 2002. He was credited with speeding up the process of fast-track courts.

Later, as a minister of Information and Broadcasting in NDA rule, he began reforms in radio, television and animation sections. He is also credited with establising Goa as the permanent site for International Film Festival of India.

In BJP's 10-year spell out of power since 2004, Ravishankar Prasad has been its prominent public face of the party, articulating its stand on key issues as its main spokesperson for many years.

He was elected for a third term in Rajya Sabha from Bihar in 2012.

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Smriti Irani, Cabinet minister

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The actress-turned-politician gets the human resources and development portfolio.

From being one of the most popular faces on the small screen to taking on Rahul Gandhi in a high-profile Lok Sabha poll battle in Amethi, Smriti Irani's induction in the Narendra Modi ministry represents a crowing glory in her political career.

Having acquired fame as a TV actress in 'saas-bahu' soap opera, she continued to under spotlight after she switched over from TV to politics and fought two tough electoral battles in the last ten years including one against Congress

heavyweight Kapil Sibal from Chandni Chowk in Delhi in 2004.

As BJP's candidate from Congress bastion of Amethi in Uttar Pradesh where she took on Rahul, Irani fought one of the most high profile electoral contests of the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. She lost but not without putting up an impressive fight that saw Rahul's margin of victory to just over a lakh.

A former National President of BJP's women's wing, Irani now holds the position of Vice President in the party.

Irani was born in Delhi and had her education in the national capital before she shifted to Mumbai and became a household name because of her role in the TV serial "Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi" for her portrayal of the character of Tulsi.

Married to businessman Zubin Irani and having one son and a daughter, Smriti Irani lists reading as her past-time.

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Harsh Vardhan, Cabinet minister

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The BJP leader from Delhi gets health and family welfare portfolio.

Known for his easy-going attitude and simplicity, Harsh Vardhan is credited with steadfastly uniting various factions in Delhi BJP and leading the party's aggresive campaign for Lok Sabha polls in which it recorded a clean sweep.

An RSS member since his younger days, 59-year-old Vardhan was BJP's Chief Ministerial nominee in the assembly polls in December last year and was made the city unit chief of the party in February replacing Vijay Goel.

Under his leadership, BJP won all the seven Lok Sabha seats in Delhi.

A practicing ENT surgeon, Vardhan had taken a strong stand of not trying to cobble up a government in the city after the party fell short of four seats in the Delhi assembly polls in December last year.

Vardhan had entered the political fray in 1993 when he successfully contested the Assembly polls from Krishna Nagar constituency in East Delhi in 1993. He went on to retain the seat in the 1998, 2003 and 2008 assembly elections.

Fondly called "Doctor Saab" by supporters and opponents alike, Vardhan is known for his efforts in eradicating polio in Delhi when he was the Health Minister.

He is known to share a very cordial relationship with RSS and people close to him say he still retains the Swayamsevak's tendency to downplay the "Swayam" (self) giving precedence to "Seva" (service).

During his Ministership in the Delhi government (1993-98), people had found him remarkably accessible and officials respected him for his hands-on style of functioning.

"He joined politics with the laudable objective of using his considerable medical knowledge and experience for serving the common man," former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee had said once about Vardhan.

Apart from being an effective minister, he also proved his organisational capabilities by rebuilding the BJP's operations in Delhi, virtually from scratch, after the party's defeat in the 2003 Assembly Election.

In late 2003, he was appointed as president of Delhi BJP.

He is credited with rebuilding the party at the grassroot level after the party's defeat in the assembly polls that year.

In April 2007, the party recaptured power in the Municipal Corporation of Delhi and in 2008, the party emerged victorious in the Delhi Cantonment Board election under his leadership.

Vardhan, known for his simplicity and amiable leadership style, is admired by many leaders belonging to various political parties.

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Thawarchand Gehlot, Cabinet minister

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The BJP leader gets social justice and empowerment portfolio.

Thawar Chand Gehlot, one of the most recognised BJP faces for Scheduled Castes in Madhya Pradesh, on Monday made it to the senior ranks of the Narendra Modi government when he was sworn in as a Cabinet minister.

Gehlot, a Rajya Sabha member, is BJP’s national general secretary. His inclusion in the Cabinet is seen as giving representation to the under-privileged section of the society. Gehlot has tested electoral waters earlier as he has been a member of the11th, 12th, 13th and 14th Lok Sabha from Shajapur constituency in the state.

He was elected to Rajya Sabha in May 2012 and is an old party loyalist. Gehlot has held several positions in state and was also head of BJP’s Scheduled Castes Cell. He was also deputed as the central observer of the party for Gujarat and is considered close to Modi.

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Ram Vilas Paswan, LJP, Cabinet minister

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The Lok Janshakti Party chief gets consumer affairs, food and public distribution portfolios.

A seasoned politician, Ram Vilas Paswan is credited with removing the tag of 'political untouchability' from Narendra Modi by being the first to rejoin the NDA which he had quit following the 2002 Gujarat riots.

Known in political circles for correctly judging which way the wind was blowing, the 67-year-old Lok Janshakti Party leader will be a prominent Dalit face of the new government.

The only exception for Paswan was the five-year period from 2009 to 2014, when his gamble of contesting Lok Sabha polls in alliance with Lalu Prasad's RJD and keeping Congress out did not pay off and his LJP drew a blank and he himself lost from pocket-borough Hajipur.

Starting his electoral career by winning Bihar Assembly election in 1969 as a member of Samyukta Socialist Party, he shifted to national politics soon and key important ministries under various prime ministers.

Springing a surprise by dumping RJD and Congress to join hands with BJP, Paswan won the poll this time by over 2.25 lakh votes from his traditional seat Hajipur (SC) in Bihar.

With his latest victory, Paswan will enter Lok Sabha for a record ninth time. He made a dream debut in Parliament in 1977 by a margin of 4.24 lakh votes that took him straight to the Guinness Book of World Records.

In 1989, he improved the record by winning from the same seat by 5 lakh votes.

After losing the 2009 poll from Hajipur, the LJP chief reached Rajya Sabha with the help of Lalu Prasad in 2010.

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Ashok Gajpati Raju, TDP, Cabinet minister

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The TDP leader gets the civil aviation portfolio.

Hailing from the titular family of Vizianagaram, TDP MP Ashok Gajapathi Raju Pusapati, a seven- time MLA in Andhra Pradesh, gives a "Royal Touch" to the Narendra Modi cabinet.

Ashok, who was elected from Vizianagaram, is the only member from the Lok Sabha to make it to the Cabinet rank from residual Andhra Pradesh.

He followed the footsteps of his father in politics. His father Dr.P V G Raju, Raja Saheb of Vizianagaram, was an ex-MP, who was in public life for over 40 years.

Ashok was first elected to Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly in 1978 as a Janata Party candidate.

He has been a member of the Telugu Desam Party since its inception in 1982 under the leadership of Telugu superstar and late Chief Minister N T Rama Rao, and was elected to the Assembly for the second time in 1983. He won subsequent elections in 1985, 1989, 1994 and 1999.

He was a Minister in Rao's cabinet and was inducted into the cabinet of N Chandrababu Naidu as well. Presently, Ashok is in the politburo of TDP.

The 63-year-old veteran TDP leader defeated YSR Congress candidate Venkata Swetha Chalapathi Kumara Krishna Rangarao Ravu by a margin of 1,06,911 votes in the just concluded elections.

The only time he lost an election was in 2004 but bounced back in 2009.

Ashok's family is known for philanthropic activities in north coastal Andhra Pradesh, donating land for educational institutions in Vizianagaram, Visakhapatnam and Srikakulam districts.

Raju founded the Maharajah Alak Narayan Society of Arts and Science with a view to confound socio-academic inequalities.

As a part of realizing his socialistic ideals, the late Raju endowed almost all his properties to the educational trust MANSAS founded in the hallowed memory of his father Maharajah Alak Narayan Gajapathi.

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Anant Geete, Shiv Sena, Cabinet minister

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The Shiv Sena leader gets the heavy industries and public enterprises portfolio.

In a party where loyalty to the first family in Shiv Sena is often considered a criteria to climb up the political ladder, Anant Geete is Uddhav's Thackeray's trusted lieutenant in Delhi.

So, when hectic lobbying began within the party for a slot in Modi's cabinet, Thackeray decided to reward Geete, an MP from Raigad, with a cabinet berth.

In recently concluded Lok Sabha election, Geete defeated Sunil Tatkare, a NCP strongman from North Konkan and a senior minister in the Maharashtra government, by a slender margin of 2110 votes. He has been elected to the Lok Sabha 6 times in a row.

Usually a low profile leader within the party, Geete was first elected to Parliament in 1996 from Ratnagiri in Konkan, a region that helped Sena win power for the first time in the state. Since then, he has been representing the constituency (now Raigad after delimitation).

He is also vocal in Lok Sabha over issues concerning the party and the state.

In the Vajpayee's government regime, he was MoS (Finance), but was soon elevated to the rank of Cabinet Minister and was given an important Power portfolio.

Even now, he trounced his rivals in the party, many even considered close to the party leadership, to bag the cabinet berth.

Geete cut his teeth in politics in 1985 when he was elected the corporator in the Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation. Even there he was the chairman of all powerful Standing Committee of the corporation, another post that usually goes to those trusted by the party.

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Harsimrat Kaur, Akali Dal, Cabinet minister

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The Akali Dal leader gets the food processing portfolio.

Daughter-in-law of Punjab Chief Minister Parakash Singh Badal, Akali Dal MP Harsimrat Kaur Badal is a prominent face of the party in Parliament.

Belonging to the powerful political family of Punjab, she was elected for the second time from Bhatinda Lok Sabha seat in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections after defeating her husband Sukhbir Badal's cousin Manpreet Singh Badal.

Among the various issues on which Harsimrat has spoken in her first term in Parliament have been concerns related to victims of 1984 riots and matters related to Punjab.

Born in a family that traces its roots to Attar Singh Majithia, a prominent General in Maharaja Ranjit Singh's army, 47-year-old Harsimrat graduated from Delhi University and pursued textile designing for three years after college.

A mother of two daughters and one son, Harsimrat has also been at the forefront of an initiative 'Nanhi Chhan' which aims to protect the girl child.

Her brother Bikram Singh Majithia is also an influential minister in the Punjab government.

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Narendra Singh Tomar, Cabinet minister

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The BJP leader gets mines, steel, labour and employment portfolios.

From a municipal councillor to a Cabinet Minister in Narendra Modi government, Madhya Pradesh BJP chief Narendra Singh Tomar's rise in his political career has been quite significant.

56-year-old Tomar, who made his debut in the Union Council of Ministers, has held several important positions in the party and was instrumental in ensuring a third term for Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan besides a thumping victory for the party in the Lok Sabha polls.

Of the total 29 Lok Sabha seats in the state, BJP won 27.

Tomar, who is known for his connect with the rank and file of the party, shares a good rapport with the RSS leadership.

The second-time MP, who won Lok Sabha poll from Gwalior, made his first foray into active politics in 1980 after he became the President of the Gwalior unit of BJP Youth Forum.

The BJP loyalist gradually became a municipal councillor and the state President of BJPYF in 1991.

Tomar was twice elected as member of Madhya Pradesh Assembly between 1998 and 2008.

He served as Cabinet Minister in the state government between 2003-07 and was later tasked to head the state party unit in November 2006.

Tomar represented Morena constituency in the last Lok Sabha.

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Jual Oram, Cabinet minister

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The BJP leader from Odisha gets the tribal affairs portfolio.

A firebrand tribal leader who created history by becoming India's first tribal affairs minister in the Vajpayee government, Jual Oram was a face saver for BJP in 2014 lok sabha polls being the party's lone winner from Odisha.

The 53-year-old BJP stalwart, who had a 6-year long stint in a public sector company before jumping into politics, prevented BJP from drawing a blank this time as in 2009 polls when he won from Sundagarh Lok Sabha constituency.

With his victory over former hockey captain and BJD nominee Dilip Tirkey at the hustings when the regional party swept the polls in Odisha, the four-time Lok Sabha member had brightened the prospects of finding a ministerial berth in Narendra Modi cabinet.

Oram, who had played a significant role in strengthening BJP's organisation in Odisha during his tenure as the state party unit president, had represented Sundargarh in Lok Sabha from 1998 but he lost in 2009 polls.

Hailing from a poor tribal family of a remote village in Odisha's Sundargarh district, Oram created history of sorts when he was made the first Tribal Affairs minister at the Centre.

For the first time, this ministry was created during the then BJP-led NDA government and Atal Bihari Vajpayee entrusted Oram with the job.

A lover of sports who always remained concerned for the welfare of the poor and downtrodden, Oram had worked for about six years in a public sector company with his diploma in electrical engineering before he decided to join politics.

Presently national vice-president of BJP, he has held several important posts including MLA and MP.

Popularly known as Juel Bhai, Oram happens to be a keen lover of tribal culture and traditions and has been playing a major role in proper preservation of indigenous life style in tribal dominated areas.

A tech savvy leader, Oram was in news for leading an agitation against a proposed iron ore mining in Khandadhar belt in Sundargarh pleading that it would jeopardise the interests of tribals.

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Radha Mohan Singh, Cabinet minister

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The BJP leader gets the agriculture portfolio.

An unsung worker of Jan Sangh and BJP all his life, veteran leader Radha Mohan Singh finally got his reward for his years of toil when he found a berth in the Narendra Modi government.

Singh (64) started his career from Motihari in Bihar as an ABVP Nagar Pramukh way back in 1967.

Modi had given the first inkling of Singh likely to play a big role in the BJP-led NDA government by praising him profusely at an election meeting in Motihari.

"Radha Mohan Singh is my old friend. We have worked together for a very long time," Modi had said at the meeting.

A five-term MP from Motihari since 1989, Singh has been known as an organisational man all his political life and has been credited by peers and contemporaries in BJP for assiduously contributing to the party's growth in Bihar in the capacity of state unit chief from 2006 to 2009.

Recognising his efforts, the BJP leadership put more responsibilities on his shoulders by making him the party's Kisan Morcha Vice-President and incharge of Uttar Pradesh and Uttarkhand units.

His credentials as a man of organisation for all seasons got its final stamp from BJP chief Rajnath Singh who made the Motihari MP chairperson of the party's disciplinary action committee soon after taking over charge two years ago.

Singh's parliamentary career has been no less illustrious as he ably discharged his duties as a member of the Consultative Committee of the Communication Ministry and as a member of the Standing Committee on Industry and Mines during his first term as Lok Sabha MP between 1989-1991.   

He also served as member of various committees on ministries of Railways, Communications, Petroleum and Natural Gas, Surface Transport and External Affairs during subsequent stints as MP.

An RSS Swayamsevak since childhood, he has actively worked towards welfare of the downtrodden and SC/STs.

A cricket enthusiast, the BJP MP was Vice President of the Association of Bihar Cricket.

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Inderjit Singh Rao, MoS independent charge

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The BJP leader gets planning, statistics and programme implementation and defence (all independent charges).

Inderjit Singh Rao, 63, quit the Congress and joined the BJP few months before the elections were announced and successfully contested from Gurgaon defeating AAP leader Yogendra Yadav and his nearest Indian National Lok Dal rival.

A prominent Ahir leader, he was a member of the council of ministers in the UPA-I where he served as the Minister of State for Defence Production.

During his stint there, Singh pushed indigenous defence production and pushed prestigious DRDO projects including the Arjun tank and LCA.

He was not inducted in the government in the UPA-II amid reports that he had differences with the then Defence Minister AK Antony.

He has also served as Minister of State for External Affairs and chaired the Parliamentary Information technology committee after 2009.

A keen sportsman, he was a member of the Indian shooting Team from 1990 to 2003 and won a Bronze Medal at the Commonwealth Shooting Championship.

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Gen (retd) V K Singh, MoS independent charge

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The former army chief gets development of north eastern region (independent charge), external affairs and overseas Indian affairs.

Singh, who was made the Minister of State (Independent Charge) in the Narendra Modi government, has somewhat of chequered past with one episode being a long unsuccessful battle with the UPA government over his age issue.

Singh, 63, lost the legal battle over his age issue with the Defence Ministry in 2012 and joined Anna Hazare's anti-corruption agitation against the UPA Government before joining the BJP just before the elections.

In the Lok Sabha elections, Singh defeated Raj Babbar of Congress from Ghaziabad seat by 5.67 lakh votes, which was second biggest margin in this election after Modi, who trounced his Congress rival Madhusudan Mistry by over 5.70 lakh votes in Vadodara.

A newcomer to politics, Singh has been in the eye of the storm over one issue or the other in recent times.

Soon after he took over as the Army chief, he started an anti-corruption tirade in the Army which saw several Lt Gens including former Military Secretary Lt Gen Avadesh Prakash facing court martial for his role in the Sukna land scam.

The majority of his tenure as Army chief was overshadowed by his battle with the Government over his age issue as he claimed it to be May 10, 1951 whereas the Government said it was May 10, 1950.

The issue saw Singh become the first service chief in the country to drag the Government to court and later, the Supreme Court decided in favour of the Government.

In his last days in office, Singh stirred controversy when he stated that he was offered a bribe of Rs 14 crore for clearing a file related to the procurement of 600 Tatra trucks for the Army.

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Santosh Gangwar, MoS independent charge

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The BJP leader gets textiles (independent charge), parliamentary affairs, water resources, river development and Ganga rejuvenation.

Santosh Gangwar, 65, has been a Lok Sabha member since 1989 barring 2009, when he lost by a narrow margin.

He was the chief whip of BJP in 14th Lok Sabha.

This time he has won from Bareilly by a margin of over 2 lakh votes.

Gangwar, who is associated with social work and active politics for over three decades, was jailed during the Emergency.

He also served as a member of the Uttar Pradesh State BJP Working Committee and held the position of General Secretary of the Uttar Pradesh BJP Unit in 1996.

He earlier held ministerial posts at the Centre as Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas with additional charge of Parliament Affairs.

He was also Minister of State of Science and Technology.

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Shripad Naik, MoS independent charge

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The BJP leader gets culture and tourism (independent charge).

Shripad Naik is a fourth term MP from North Goa and was minister of State in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government.

Considered a competitor to Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar in Goa, Naik belongs to the influential Bhandari community which constitutes 27 per cent of Goa’s population.

Before being elected to the Lok Sabha for the first time in 1999, Naik, 61, was a member of the Legislative Assembly for seven years. He retained his North Goa LS seat in 2004, 2009 and 2014.

As Minister of State, Naik held Agriculture, Shipping, Civil Aviation and Finance portfolios between 2000 and 2004. He wanted to return to state politics at the time of the assembly elections in 2012 but was denied ticket.

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Dharmendra Pradhan, MoS independent charge

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The BJP leader gets independent charge of petroleum and natural gas.

Dharmendra Pradhan is a post graduate in Anthropology from the Utkal University in Odisha, is a Rajya Sabha MP from Bihar.

He has been rewarded with a ministerial berth for the stunning victory of BJP in Bihar with him as the party's campaign in-charge.

Starting his political career as a member of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad, Pradhan was elected President of Talcher College Students' Union in 1985.

A vocal opponent of religion based reservation in jobs, Pradhan, in the past, has worked as Election in-charge of Bihar state, Organisational in-charge of party affairs in the states of Karnataka, Uttarakhand, Jharkhand and Odisha.

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Sarbananda Sonowal, MoS independent charge

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The BJP leader from Assam gets skill development, entrepreneurship, youth affairs and sports (independent charge).

Sarbananda Sonowal, 51, is one of the most promising leaders from Assam.

Elected to Lok Sabha after defeating Union Minister Ranee Narah in Lakhimpur constituency, he is credited with leading the BJP in the state as president to help it bag seven seats out of 14, raising the tally from 4.

"My priority is Assam's all round development besides zero tolerance for the illegal migrants and complete seal of Indo-Bangla border," Sonowal told PTI immediately after taking oath.

Sonowal, who had entered Lok Sabha for the first time in 2004 after defeating former Union Minister Paban Singh Ghatowar in Dibrugarh, entered politics by joining AGP in 2001 and soon he was elected as MLA.

He is considered to be one the most popular leaders in Assam having long career in public life since his days as a student leader.

After having difference with the AGP leadership, the former president of powerful All Assam Students Union, had joined the BJP in 2011. He was appointed as the President of the state unit of BJP in 2012.

Sonowal is also credited with successfully challenging the controversial Illegal Migrants (Determination by Tribunals) Act, which was stuck down by Supreme Court terming the legislation as "the biggest hurdle and is the main impediment or barrier in the identification and deportation of illegal migrants".

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Prakash Javadekar, MoS independent charge

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The prominent BJP spokesperson gets information and broadcasting (independent charge), environment, forest and climate change (independent charge), and parliamentary affairs.

One of the most visible faces of BJP on television, Javadekar is considered close to former party president Nitin Gadkari, a member of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's core group.

A former banker, Javadekar, 63, had his grooming in politics in Akhil Bhartiya Vidyarthi Parishad, the students wing of RSS.

He was a member of the Maharashtra Legislative Council for two terms from 1990 to 2002 before being elected to Rajya Sabha in 2008.

Hailing from Pune, Javadekar, a commerce graduate, is a BJP spokesperson and party's incharge of Andhra Pradesh.

He was instrumental in striking a deal with Chandrababu Naidu's TDP.

Javadekar also played a role in unearthing cash for vote scam.

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Piyush Goyal, MoS independent charge

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The BJP leader gets independent charge of power, coal and new and renewable energy portfolios.

Goyal, 49, is the BJP treasurer and considered close to Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

A rank-holder CA, Goyal is well-versed with economic issues and has been on the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Finance and the Consultative Committee for the Ministry of Defence during his stint as Rajya Sabha MP from Maharashtra.

He is son of senior BJP leader Vedprakash Goyal, who was shipping minister in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government and National Treasurer of the BJP for over two decades.

Goyal-junior heads BJP's Information Communication Campaign Committee that oversees all efforts of the party through internet, mobile and other social media.

Associated with the BJP since 1984, Goyal has held several positions in the party such as Member, National Executive, Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha. He has also served as the party's secretary in Mumbai and National Campaign Incharge for the Lok Sabha elections, 1991.

Goyal is an aluminus of Don Bosco High School, Mumbai and is a law graduate Government Law College, Mumbai and Institute of Chartered Accountants of India, New Delhi.

He is also active member of the Managing Committee of Indian Merchants Chamber and is involved with NGOs in diverse fields such as tribal education and welfare of the physically challenged.

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Jitendra Singh, MoS independent charge

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The BJP leader gets science and technology (independent charge), earth sciences (independent charge), prime minister office, personnel, public grievances & pensions, department of atomic energy and department of space.

A physician by profession, Jitendra Singh had joined BJP in 2009 and is a member of the party's National Executive Committee.

He is also Chief Spokesperson for the Jammu and Kashmir unit of BJP.

Singh, 57, contested Lok Sabha election from Udhampur and defeated former Union Minister and veteran Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad.

He has authored eight books and is also a newspaper columnist. 

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Nirmala Sitharaman, MoS independent charge

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The BJP spokesperson gets commerce and industry (independent charge), finance and corporate affairs.

Sitharaman, an articulate BJP spokesperson, has been rewarded with a ministerial berth. She is liked due to her sincere approach and also by the fact she does her best to respond to all questions, which are thrown at her. 

Not a member of either Lok Sabha or Rajya Sabha presently, she is likely to be nominated to the Upper House by BJP. Born in Tamil Nadu and married into an Andhra family, she joined the BJP even though her in-laws have had an association with the Congress. She is also a former member of the National Commission for Women.

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G M Siddeshwara, minister of state

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The BJP leader gets civil aviation.

G M Siddeshwara, hailing from the most powerful Lingayat community, is the third time Lok Sabha member. He defeated S S Mallikarjun of Congress by a margin of 17,607 votes in the recently held Lok Sabha elections.

62-year-old Siddeshwara has followed in the footsteps of his father G Mallikarjunappa who was also Member of Parliament from BJP.

Siddeshwara has worked at various party positions both at state and National levels.

He is the Chairman and Advisor for the G M Group with an annual turnover over Rs 200 Crores. The Group companies include GEM Laboratories Pvt Ltd, G M Software Pvt Ltd, Srishyla Farms, GEM International( Three Star Hotel Project in Bangalore), GM Sugars, GM Institute of Technology.

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Manoj Sinha, minister of state

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The BJP leaders gets railways portfolio.

Sinha, 54, a civil engineer-turned-politician was elected to Lok Sabha in 1996, 1999, 2014.

He served as President of student's union of Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi.

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Upendra Kushwaha, minister of state

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The BJP leader gets rural development, Panchayati Raj, drinking water and sanitation

A former close supporter of outgoing Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, Upendra Kushwaha helped NDA make inroads in backward castes voters in Bihar in the current Lok Sabha poll.

Elevated to the post of Leader of Opposition in Bihar Assembly in 2004 in his very first outing as MLA from Jandaha in Vaishali district by Nitish Kumar, 54-year-old Kushwaha later fell out with Kumar.

After unsuccessfully experimenting with NCP as its state chief, Kushwaha later mended ways with Kumar who sent him to Rajya Sabha in 2010.

But, the rapprochement did not last long and Kushwaha ultimately quit JD-U and also vacated Rajya Sabha seat.

He formed Rashtriya Lok Samata Party on March 3, 2013 to launch agitation against Kumar.

His anti-Nitish Kumar tirade earned him a place in NDA with RLSP reaching seat-sharing with BJP.

RLSP won all the three seats of Karakat, Jehanabad and Sitamarhi. Kushwaha himself triumphed from Karakat seat.

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P Radhakrishan, minister of state

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The BJP leader gets heavy industries and public enterprises.

The BJP state unit president Pon Radhakrishnan, who originally hailed from the Hindu Munnani (Hindu Front), is known for his organisational skills, especially with his acumen coming to the fore in this election where he managed to help his party stitch up a six-party alliance.

He had first represented the Nagercoil constituency in 1999 and later became a Minister in the NDA government and was Union Minister of State for Youth Affairs and Sports,

Urban Development and Poverty Alleviation and Road Transport and  Highways.

An advocate by profession, 62 year-old Radhakrishnan is serving his second stint as state president and is perceived to be a leader with a clean image.

Hailing from the Nadar community, Radhakrishnan is fondly addressed by his supporters as 'Pon R'.

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Kiren Rijiju, minister of state

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The BJP leader from Arunachal Pradesh gets home portfolio.

From a grassroot worker to the post of BJP national secretary and now to Parliament, Kiren Rijiju, a youth leader from Arunachal Pradesh, has travelled a long way.

Born in November 19, 1971 at Nakhu Village under Nafra circle in West kameng district, Rijiju is a firebrand young leader who has entered the Lok Sabha for the second time.

Earlier he was elected from Arunachal West constituency to the 14th Lok Sabha.

Soon after his defeat in the 2009 Lok Sabha election, he joined the Congress in August 2009, two months ahead of the Assembly election, and later became the advisor to former chief minister Dorjee Khandu.

As the BJP's MP from Arunachal Pradesh, Rijiju won this time especially because Modi showed a huge interest in the development of the Northeast and wanted the party to grow roots there. He was Modi's 'Look East' candidate.

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Krishan Pal Gujjar, minister of state

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The BJP leader gets road transport and highways, and shipping

Krishan Pal Gurjar, considered as a long-term associate of Narendra Modi, is an MP from Faridabad and an old alumni of Jawahar Lal University, Delhi.

Gurjar was first elected to Haryana Assembly from Mevla Maharajpur constituency in 1996.

He became Haryana BJP chief in 2009 and won the Lok Sabha election this time by a margin of over 4 lakh votes.

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Sanjeev Kumar Balyan, minister of state

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The BJP leader gets agriculture, food processing industries.

A practising veterinary doctor, Minister of State Sanjeev Baliyan, joined BJP only one-and-a-half-years ago.

A Jat and a native of Kutba village in Muzaffanagar district of Uttar Pradesh, he was jailed for about one month during the pre-emptive actions taken before the Muzaffarnagar riots.

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Mansukhbhai Vasava, Minister of state

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The BJP leader gets tribal affairs portfolio

Mansukhbhai Vasava has the rare distinction of being a tribal leader who has got elected from a general seat 5 times in a row.

Vasava, 56, has risen from being a grassroots worker of BJP to a five-term MP from Bharuch, once the stronghold of Congress president Sonia Gandhi's political secretary Ahmed Patel, who earlier represented the seat in Parliament.

After serving the party as an ordinary worker, Vasava first came into limelight when he was chosen by BJP to contest the bye-election to Bharuch in 1998 following the death of sitting party MP Chandubhai Deshmukh. Vasava, a native of Junaraj village of Narmada district, won.

Vasava won the seat in 1999, 2004, 2009 and 2014.

He was earlier elected to the Legislative Assembly in 1994 and also served as deputy minister.

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Raosaheb Danve, minister of state

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The BJP leader gets consumer affairs, food and public distribution

Raosaheb Danve of BJP is a fourth-term member of Lok Sabha from Jalna who rose from the ranks after his baptism in politics at panchayat level.

An under graduate, he was elected to the Lok Sabha for the first time in 1999. He retained the seat in 2004, 2009 and 2014.

He was also twice elected to the Maharashtra Assembly.

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Vishnu Deo Sai, minister of state

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The BJP leader gets mines, steel, labour and employment

Vishnu Deo Sai, face of Scheduled Tribes in Chhattisgarh, is the lone representative from the state to be sworn in as Minister of State in the Narendra Modi government.

50-year-old Sai, a fourth time MP, represents Raigarh constituency.

Sai, a tribal leader, was crucial in ensuring BJP's victory in Chhattisgarh Assembly and Lok Sabha elections.

BJP had won 49 seats in the 90-member Assembly in 2013 and won ten out of 11 Lok Sabha seats in the state.

Sai, who heads the state BJP, is considered a close aide of Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh. He was a member of Madhya Pradesh Assembly for two consecutive terms - 1990-98 - before the state was carved out in 2000. He was elected to Lok Sabha in 1999, 2004 and 2009.

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Sudarshan Bhagat, minister of state

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The BJP leader gets social justice and empowerment portfolio.

Tribal leader and MP Sudarshan Bhagat is the only face in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's council of ministers from Jharkhand, where BJP won 12 of the 14 Lok Sabha seats.

The MP from Lohardaga constituency, is closely associated with RSS and will head a portfolio for the first time.

Before this, the lone representation in the Congress-led UPA-II government was Subodh Kant Sahay who had quit in October 2012 days after a row over the coal block allocation.

Currently there is a coalition government headed by JMM's Hemant Soren in the state and Assembly elections are due in December this year.

BJP is hopeful of wresting power from Congress-JMM-RJD combine in the state. BJP had formed the first government in Jharkhand after its formation in 2000 under Babulal Marandi's leadership who is now heading another party JVM(P).

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Nihal Chand, minister of state

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The BJP leader from Ganganagar, Rajasthan gets chemical and fertilizers portfolio.




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