Vasundhara Raje

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The Honourable
Vasundhara Raje Scindia
Vasundhara Raje.jpg
Raje in December 2014
22nd, 24th Chief Minister of Rajasthan
Assumed office
13 December 2013 (2013-12-13)
Preceded by Ashok Gehlot
In office
9 December 2003 (2003-12-09) – 10 December 2008 (2008-12-10)
Preceded by Ashok Gehlot
Succeeded by Ashok Gehlot
Personal details
Born (1948-03-08) 8 March 1948 (age 69)
Bombay, Bombay State, Dominion of India
(now Mumbai, Maharashtra, India)
Political party Bharatiya Janata Party
Spouse(s) Hemant Singh (1972-74)[1]
Children Dushyant Singh
Parents
Relatives
Residence Dholpur, Rajasthan
Alma mater University of Mumbai
Website www.vasundhararaje.in/en

Vasundhara Raje Scindia (born 8 March 1948), commonly referred to as Vasundhara Raje, is an Indian politician who has been Chief Minister of Rajasthan since 2013; previously she served in the same post from 2003 to 2008. She is the first female Chief Minister of Rajasthan.

Early life

Vasundhara Raje was born on 8 March 1948 in Mumbai. She is daughter of Vijayaraje Scindia and Jivajirao Scindia, Maharaja of Gwalior, members of the prominent Scindia royal Maratha family.[2] She completed her school education from Presentation Convent, Kodaikanal, Tamil Nadu, and later graduated with Economics and Political Science degrees (Hons.) from Sophia College, affiliated to Mumbai University, Mumbai.

Personal life

Vasundhara Raje married Hemant Singh, of the ex-royal Dholpur family, on 17 November 1972, but the couple separated a year later.[3] Her son Dushyant Singh was elected to the Lok Sabha from her former constituency, Jhalawar.[4]

Her siblings are Yashodhara Raje Scindia, Industries Minister of Madhya Pradesh, the late Madhavrao Scindia, the late Padmavati Raje 'Akkasaheb' Burman (1942–64), who wed Kirit Deb Burman, last ruling Maharaja of Tripura, and Usha Raje Rana (b. 1943) who married into the Rana family of Nepal.

The top leaders of BJP Government

Political Influence

Owing to the atmosphere Vasundhara was enveloped in at a tender age, public service and politics has been ingrained strongly into her mind and heart. Vasundhara during the 1960s and the 1970s was a spectator to the times when her mother, Vijaya Raje Scindia was accorded high recognition in the realm of Indian politics, after she combated the tyrannical forces of Congress Party. Meanwhile, the nation initiated an agitation against the supreme forces ruling then. Amidst the wild animosity in the nation, Rajmata Vijaya Raje was arrested during the concerned Emergency.[5]

Early Political Career

In 1984, Raje stepped into the Indian political system. Initially, she was made a Member of the National Executive of the newly formed Bharatiya Janata party (BJP). She was also elected as a member of the 8th Rajasthan Assembly from Dholpur. The same year, she was appointed as the Vice President of the Yuva Morcha, Rajasthan BJP.[5]

Work as Minister of State in MEA

In March 1998, the nation elected the 12th Lok Sabha in which BJP clinched a humungous mandate of 182 seats. It was Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee who was sworn in as the Prime Minister of the nation for the tenure 1998-2004. During this time, Vasundhara Raje was not only elected as the MP from Jhalawar but also sworn in as the Minister of State in the Ministry of External Affairs, a department which was personally headed by the Prime Minister himself. Notably, Vasundhara Raje got an opportunity to work closely under the Prime Minister. Atal Bihari Vajpayee has been described as a large influence in Raje’s life. After being appointed as the Minister of State for External Affairs, Vasundhara pioneered the drive of strengthening Indian relations with a multitude of countries, thereby creating an amicable external environment of peace, security, collaborated personnel development among many other aspects. Vasundhara also received a battery of delegations from across the world. In 1998, India became highly equipped with nuclear capabilities, thereby becoming an influential nuclear power in the World. Nonetheless, this new status was regarded contrarily by the World community, while it was highly encouraging for the Indian community. The International community imposed sanctions on India. Raje became the face of India’s Foreign policy. She engaged with various sections of the international community and succeeded in restoring confidence of global communities towards the country. The International community withdrew sanctions in no time.[5]

ModiGate

On 25 August 2011, Lalit Modi revealed that BJP leader Vasundhara Raje signed a document supporting Modi's application to the British authorities. The application had a secrecy clause that it should not be revealed to the Indian authorities. The application was never presented to the British authorities,[6] In her affidavit, Raje had claimed that Modi was a victim of a "political witch hunt" by the then ruling Congress.[7] Earlier, in 2013, a Jaipur-based lawyer Poonam Chand Bhandari had filed a public interest litigation in the Delhi high court. She had claimed that Lalit Modi had transferred millions of rupees to a company owned by Vasundhara Raje and her son Dushyant Singh, using a shell company.[8] Niyant Heritage Hotels Private Limited (NHHPL) is owned by Dushyant Singh, and his mother Vasundhara Raje holds 3,280 shares in the company.[9] In 2008, Lalit Modi's company Anand Heritage Hotels Private Limited (AHHPL) provided an unsecured loan of ₹ 38 million to NHHPL. During 2008–09, AHHPL acquired 815 shares in NHHPL, paying ₹ 96,000 for each share, although the face value of each share was only ₹ 10. NHHPL, which previously had a paid up capital of ₹ 1 million, thus received a total of 116.3 million from AHHPL.[10][11] In June 2015, the Congress accused Vasundhara Raje of corruption, alleging that she had granted favours to Lalit Modi in exchange for the money.[12]

Aravalli hills mining scam

Ashok Gehlot was accused of granting mining lease in Rajasthan's part of Aravalli Hills to companies which were close to the congress. BJP issued a ‘Black Paper’ on graft under Ashok Gehlot’s government and alleged it to be a 3.4 lakh crore scam by Indian National Congress. After getting elected as the Chief Minister of Rajasthan, Vasundhara Raje's government justified the lease and argued against the cancellation of the lease. The same lease was earlier called to be against the Supreme Court orders by BJP, while she was in opposition. This raised questions about BJP's seriousness in eradicating corruption.[13]

Posts held

Membership of Legislative Assembly

  • 1985-90 Member, 8th Rajasthan Legislative Assembly from Dholpur
  • 2003-08 Member, 12th Rajasthan Legislative Assembly from Jhalrapatan
  • 2008-13, 13th Rajasthan Legislative Assembly from Jhalrapatan
  • 2013 onwards Member 14th Rajasthan Legislative Assembly from Jhalrapatan

Membership of Parliament

Vasundhara Raje Scindia at the inauguration of Bhamashah Yojana in Udaipur, Rajasthan.

Positions held

  • 1985-87 : Vice-President, Yuva Morcha BJP, Rajasthan
  • 1987 : Vice-President, BJP, Rajasthan
  • 1990-91 : Member, Library Committee, Member, Consultative Committee, Ministries of Commerce and Tourism
  • 1991-96 : Member, Consultative Committees, Ministries of Power, Science and Technology, Environment and Tourism1996-97 Member, Committee on Science and Technology, Environment and Forests, Member, Consultative Committees, Ministries of Power, Science and Technology and Tourism
  • 1997-1998 : Joint Secretary, BJP Parliamentary Party
  • 1998-99 : Union Minister of State, External Affairs
  • 13 October 1999 – 31 Aug.. 2001: Union Minister of State (Independent Charge), Small Scale Industries and Agro & Rural Industries; Department of Personnel and Training; Department of Pensions and Pensioners’ Welfare in the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions; Department of Atomic Energy and Department of Space
  • 1 September 2001 – 1 November 2001: Union Minister of State, Small Scale Industries; Personnel, Training, Pensions, Administrative Reforms & Public Grievances; Department of Atomic Energy; and Department of Space (Independent Charge) 2 November 2001-
  • 29 January 2003 – 8 December 2003: Union Minister of State, Small Scale Industries; Personnel, Training, Pensions, Administrative Reforms & Public Grievances; Planning; Department of Atomic Energy; and Department of Space (Independent Charge) 14 November 2002 -
  • 14 December 2003 – Present: President, BJP, Rajasthan
  • 8 December 2003 – 8 December 2008: Chief Minister, Rajasthan
  • 2 January 2009 – 8 December 2013: Leader of Opposition, Rajasthan Legislative Assembly
  • 8 December 2013 – Present: Chief Minister, Rajasthan

See also

References

  1. ^ "ये हैं CM वसुंधरा के Ex husband, नानी ने गोद लेकर बनाया था राजा" [He is ex husband of CM Vasundhara, maternal grandmother adopted him for kingdom] (in Hindi). Dainik Bhaskar. 16 July 2015. 
  2. ^ "Profile on Rajasthan Assembly website". Rajasthan Legislative Assembly Secretariat, Jaipur (Rajasthan) INDIA. Retrieved 10 March 2014. 
  3. ^ "Vasundhara Raje: A comeback politician who is also a fashion symbol". Economic Times. 8 December 2013. Retrieved 10 March 2014. 
  4. ^ "Fifteenth Lok Sabha Members Bioprofile". Lok Sabha Secretariat. Retrieved 10 March 2014. 
  5. ^ a b c Life and Career - Vasundhara Raje
  6. ^ Raje left to fend for herself in Lalit Modi visa row | GulfNews.com
  7. ^ Vasundhara Raje's Testimony May Have Helped Lalit Modi Extend Stay in UK
  8. ^ Transactions between Raje's son Dushyant and Lalit Modi under scanner | india | Hindustan Times
  9. ^ Raje’s shares in company a gift from her son: BJP
  10. ^ Raje’s son got Rs 4-cr loan for hotel from Lalit: Cong
  11. ^ ED heat on former directors of Lalit Modi’s hotel firm | The Indian Express
  12. ^ Sushma Swaraj, Vasundhara Raje helped me: Lalit Modi - The Hindu
  13. ^ Why the BJP forgot a Rs 3.4 lakh crore scam in Rajasthan

External links

  • http://rajassembly.nic.in/precm.htm
  • Profile of Vasundhara Raje
  • Jyotiraditya Schindia
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