Second Malayali in Union Cabinet

Published - July 07, 2021 09:22 pm IST - Thiruvananthapuram

Rajeev Chandrasekhar is the second Malayali to join the Union Council of Ministers headed by Narendra Modi as Minister of State. The BJP leader and three-time Rajya Sabha MP from Karnataka has strong roots in Kerala. He has been active in Kerala's political and cultural life.

Mr. Chandrasekhar is a technocrat with an MS in Computer Science from the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago. He had also attended short management programmes at Harvard and Standford Universities.

A product of Silicon Valley, California, Mr. Chandrasekhar forayed into the nascent telecom sector in India in 1994. His company pioneered India's private cellular network. Mr. Chandrasekhar had successfully lobbied for the creation of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India. He had also played a key role in formulating India's telecom policy in 1999.

Mr. Chandrasekhar had served on various parliamentary committees, including Finance, Public Accounts, IT, Communication and Data Protection, in his 15 years in the Upper House.

Mr. Chandrasekhar has an abiding interest in Indian culture and learning. He officiates as vice chairman of the Vivekananda International Foundation, Centre for Economic Studies. The MP is credited with spotlighting the 2G scam in 2007. He had filed a public interest litigation that caused the Supreme Court to strike down the draconian Section 66A of the IT Act. He also introduced the Right to Privacy Bill as a Private Member's Bill in Parliament.

V. Muraleedharan, Minister of State for External Affairs, is the other Malayali in the Ministry.

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