While B L Joshi became the first governor in Narendra Modi government to leave office on Monday, 74-year-old Aziz Qureshi was administered oath of office as UP Governor by Chief Justice of Allahabad High Court D Y Chandrachud at Raj Bhawan. Qureshi, who is also the Governor of Uttarakhand, has been given additional charge of Uttar Pradesh after Joshi resigned from the post on June 16 earlier this month.
Qureshi was received by Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Azam Khan and Cabinet minister Rajendra Chaudhary besides other top officials upon his arrival to Lucknow. The ministers, along with several Congress leaders, were also present at Qureshi’s oath-taking ceremony at the Raj Bhawan.
Qureshi is the first UP governor in a decade to come from a political background. The state’s last two governors, T V Rajeshwar and B L Joshi, were both retired IPS officers.
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Speaking to the reporters, he said: “I am grateful to the President of India, Prime Minister and Home Minister for giving me this responsibility. It is too early to comment on anything, I would first look into the things happening here and would only then make any comment.” He, however, refused to say anything on the controversy surrounding the Central government’s demand from UPA-appointed governors to voluntarily step down, a stand also adopted by the outgoing governor (Joshi). Before leaving for Jaipur on Monday morning, Joshi said as he is “still a Governor”, he has “decided that as a Governor I would not say anything”. “But I (do) feel that this state has a great potential and so hope that “UP would go on to become Uttam Pradesh.”
A lawyer by profession, Qureshi hails from MP and has been a Congress leader for over five decades. He was elected Member of Legislative Assembly in Madhya Pradesh in 1972 and also served as a minister in the state government there under the then regime.
He was also elected a Member of Parliament from Satna LS constituency in 1984. He was then appointed Uttarakhand’s Governor by the UPA Government on May 15, 2012, a post which he will simultaneously continue to hold along with the new additional charge of UP Governor.