After hours of deliberation and several rounds of meetings, Ashok Gehlot was declared the Chief Minister of Rajasthan by the Congress on Friday. Gehlot, who was one of the frontrunners along with Sachin Pilot, was picked by party chief Rahul Gandhi. Gehlot won the Assembly elections from Sardarpura constituency by 97,081 votes.
Born to a Mali Gehlot family in Jodhpur on May 3, 1951, Gehlot completed his graduation in Science and Law and later obtained a Masters in Economics. Prior to entering politics, in 1971 during the liberation war of Bangladesh, Gehlot had served in the refugee camps at several places, including Bangaon and 24 Parganas districts, in West Bengal. He was also active in the camps organised by the Tarun Shanti Sena at Sevagram, Indore, Aurangabad, and Wardha.
In 1974, he became the first state president of National Students’ Union of India (NSUI) and in 1982, he was elected as the general secretary of the Rajasthan Pradesh Congress Committee.
The Congress leader was elected for the first time to the 7th Lok Sabha from Jodhpur parliamentary constituency in 1980. He went on to represent Jodhpur parliamentary constituency in the 8th, 10th, 11th and 12th Lok Sabha.
In 1999, he was elected as MLA from Sardarpura (Jodhpur) assembly constituency. He won three assembly elections back-to-back. -Gehlot served as Rajasthan CM on two occasions, from 1998 to 2003 and again from 2008 to 2013.
He also served as Union Minister a few times – Union Minister of State for Tourism and Civil Aviation from 2 September 1982 – 7 February 1984, Deputy Union Minister for Sports In office from 7 February 1984 – 31 October 1984 and Union Minister of State (Textiles) Independent Charge from 21 June 1991 – 18 January 1993.