Minister for Road Transport and Highways and Shipping, and Minister for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (May 2019 – Present): Nitin Gadkari
Date of Birth: May 27, 1957
Place of Birth: Nagpur, Maharashtra
Parents: His mother is Bhanutai Gadkari and father is Jairam Gadkari.
Spouse: His wife is Kanchan Gadkari. They have 3 children – daughter Ketki and sons Nikhil and Sarang.
Political Party: Gadkari is a member of Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). As a teenager, he worked for the Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha as well as the student union of BJP – Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad.
Education: Gadkari did his M.Com (Master of Commerce) and LLB (Bachelor of Law) from the University of Nagpur.
Career: Apart from his career as a politician, Gadkari has also built a number of companies that may be enumerated as below with his position in them in parentheses:
- Poly Sack Industrial Society Ltd (founder and chairman)
- Empress Employees Co-operative Paper Mills Ltd (founder and chairman)
- Nikhil Furniture and Appliances Pvt. Ltd (promoter and director)
- Purti Power and Sugar Ltd (promoter)
- Antyodaya Trust (founder and member)
He is also listed as an agriculturalist for purposes of taxation.
Political Milestones: One of the first major highlights of the political career of Nitin Gadkari was serving as the PWD (Public Works Department) Minister of Maharashtra from 1996 to 1999. He also served as the President of the BJP from 2009 to 2013. In the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, he contested from the Nagpur constituency and won by 285,000 votes against Vilas Muttemwar, a Congress candidate. In the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, he won again from the same constituency by defeating the Congress candidate Nana Patole. This time he won by a margin of 216,000 votes.
From 2014 to 2019, he served as the Union Minister for Road Transport and Highways as well as the Union Minister for Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation. On May 31, 2019 the latter ministry was replaced by that of the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises. Apart from these, he has also graced a number of other positions over the years that may be mentioned as follows:
- President, Bharatiya Janata Party, Maharashtra State
- Leader of Opposition, Maharashtra Legislative Council
- Member of Legislative Council, Maharashtra State
- Elected to the Legislative Council of Maharashtra in 1989 from Graduates constituency, Nagpur Region
- Re-elected as MLC in the year 1990
- Re-elected as MLC in the year 1996 and elected unopposed in 2002
- Member of the High-Power Committee for Privatisation, Government of Maharashtra
- Chairman, Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation, India
- Guardian Minister for Nagpur District, Government of Maharashtra
- Chairman, Mining Policy Implementation Committee, Government of Maharashtra
- Chairman, Metropolis Beautification Committee, Government of Maharashtra
- Chairman National Rural Road Development Committee
- Chairman, Review Committee of CPWD, Government of India
As the Union Minister, one of the highlights of Gadkari’s tenure has been the way he has increased the speed of road and highway construction in India.