The induction of Sushma Swaraj, who was seen as a dissenter after Narendra Modi was declared BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate, is an acknowledgement 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.
(With inputs from PTI)
Sitaram Yechury had earlier raised objections to the outfit, Overseas Friends of BJP, Malaysia, making such a declaration through a poster and written to External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.
Bikku, who came to Oman on a visit visa, took up a job without following official procedures. He is now battling for life at a hospital in Muscat without much help.
Sushma Swaraj is known for reaching out to people in distress via Twitter. But this was unusually different.
Ministry of External Affairs organises the yatra during June to September every year
"I appeal to fellow Indians. Next time you meet an African citizen, pl shake hand and say 'India loves you'," the minister tweeted.
Janta Dal (U) remarks on attacks on Africans comes in a wake between External Affairs Minister and delegation of African student in Delhi.
Sushma Swaraj said that her ministry will initiate programs aimed at sensitising locals about African students in areas where their numbers are high.
Mashal, whose both parents are doctors, had scored 91 per cent marks in her CBSE Class XII examination this year.
In a series of tweets on Sunday, Swaraj said she had spoken to Rajnath Singh and Delhi Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung to press for ensuring the safety of African nationals.
The six languages include- Bengali, Marathi, Gujarati, Malayalam, Tamil and Telugu.
External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Vikas Swarup said government will assist the family of the Congolese youth Masunda Kitanda Oliver to come to India and to take his mortal remains.
Oliver was beaten to death last week in Vasant Kunj area following a brawl over hiring of an autorickshaw
Swaraj’s remark comes in wake of the brutal murder of a Congolese youth in South Delhi's Vasant Kunj on May 20.
Maliwal wrote to Swaraj after she sought a report from the Lieutenant Governor on the alleged molestation of a Belgian national by an Ola cab driver on May 7 near C R Park.
The 64-year-old Union minister was admitted to AIIMS on April 25 after she complained of chest congestion and fever.
A senior doctor said her condition was stable. She was admitted to the old private ward of Pulmonary Medicine Department around 5 PM.
External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will visit Canada in June to strengthen bilateral economic and cultural ties between the two countries, India's envoy said here.
"I have asked Indian Ambassador to ascertain all the facts and report. My heartfelt condolences to the bereaved family," Swaraj tweeted.
Counter-terrorism capacity and smart alliances — not UN resolutions — can make India safe.
New Delhi needs to be clear-eyed about just how little the international sanctions regime is actually worth before deciding how to respond.
Earlier this month, China stopped UN sanctions committee from designating Azhar as terrorist
Her remarks come in the backdrop of China stopping UN sanctions committee from designating Azhar as terrorist, maintaining that the case "did not meet the requirements" of the Security Council.
Enhancing energy cooperation and development of the Chabahar port were the centerpiece of talks which was mostly dominated by economic issues.
She will go to Moscow from Tehran on Sunday where she will participate in the annual Foreign Ministers' meeting of RIC (Russia, India and China).
While External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will meet Chinese Foreign minister Wang Yi in Moscow on April 18, NSA Ajit K Doval will meet Chinese State Councillor Yang Jiechi on April 21.
They were brought back to India after Sushma Swaraj requested the Syrian Deputy Prime Minister to secure their release.
The minister said that the “wild rumors being spread about any harm done” to the priest were “totally baseless”.
Started in 2003 and anchored by the erstwhile MOIA, it was an annual event that celebrated the Indian diaspora's success and deliberated on issues confronting them.
Reverend Thomas Uzhunnalil, a Salesian priest, was kidnapped in Yemen on March 4 during a raid on a nursing home run by Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity.
Fr Uzhunnalil was reportedly kidnapped on March 4 after four gunmen attacked a retirement home in Aden run by the Missionaries of Charity.
Indian Embassy in Brussels is making efforts to locate Raghavendran Ganesh since the terror attacks at the Brussels airport and the metro which left 31 dead and 300 injured.
Swaraj’s announcement came after she met Sartaj Aziz, the Pakistan Prime Minister’s Foreign Affairs Advisor
Pakistan Foreign Ministry Advisor Sartaj Aziz on Thursday extended invitation for Prime Minister Modi to attend SAARC Summit, to be hosted by Pakistan later this year.
The usual narrative expected to play out is the following: while India will insist on progress on the Pathankot attack, Pakistan will say that its internal agencies are working towards that goal.
Highly-placed government sources said that India will seek to gain "knowledge" about the action taken by Pakistan against the perpetrators of the deadly attack on the IAF base in Pathankot.
The 37th SAARC Council of Ministers meeting will take place on Thursday after which she will also hold bilateral talks with her counterparts from several countries.