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Last Updated Wednesday October 21 2020 12:59 PM IST

Naidu travels a long distance from a Jan Sangh boy to India's vice-president-elect

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From pasting posters to NDA's vice-presidential candidate, Venkaiah Naidu Garu has come a long way Union minister M. Venkaiah Naidu who was announced as the BJP's vice-presidential candidate in party's parliamentary board meeting, in New Delhi on Monday. PTI

New Delhi: From pasting party posters to an epitome of political and ideological loyalty who rose to become one of BJP's most visible leaders and now India's vice president-elect, Muppavarapu Venkaiah Naidu has come a long way.

Born to a humble agricultural family in Andhra Pradesh's Nellore district, the 68-year-old has served as BJP president, minister in various portfolios and a long-time Rajya Sabha member.

This remarkable career in politics has been more than four decades in the making.

It began in the '70s when BJP's precursor Jana Sangh was a marginal player with little clout in the south and a young party worker kept himself busy putting up posters of stalwarts such as Atal Bihari Vajpayee and L.K. Advani.

From a humble agricultural family of Andhra Pradesh's Nellore district, the former BJP national president is known for his oratory. A two-term member of the Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly, Naidu was never a member of the Lok Sabha.

He was, however, elected to the Rajya Sabha three times from Karnataka and currently represents Rajasthan in the Upper House of Parliament.

"A farmer's son, M Venkaiah Naidu Garu brings years of experience in public life and is admired across the political spectrum," prime minister Narendra Modi had said in a tweet after announcing his candidature for the V-P polls.

From Advani protege to minister in Modi government

Once an Advani protege, Naidu vigorously backed Modi for the prime minister's post before the 2014 elections.

Naidu quit the portfolios of information and broadcasting and housing and urban affairs after he was declared the NDA candidate. He was also minister of parliamentary affairs in the Modi government.

Earlier, he had served as rural development minister in the previous NDA government led by Vajpayee.

The veteran party leader also served as the BJP national president from July 2002 to October 2004 for two consecutive terms.

From pasting posters to NDA's vice-presidential candidate, Venkaiah Naidu Garu has come a long way Union minister Venkaiah Naidu with PM Narendra Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah on Monday.

He quit the post after the party's defeat in the 2004 Lok Sabha elections.

Naidu was an ABVP activist during the Emergency, and was arrested and jailed.

'Making of Developed India'

As the first minister of parliamentary affairs in the Modi government, Naidu had defended the prime minister and the government whenever the opposition targeted them in both the houses of Parliament.

He had also ensured high political outreach by meeting Congress chief Sonia Gandhi when there was a standoff between the government and the opposition in Parliament.

Several major legislations were cleared by Parliament when he was the parliamentary affairs minister, including the historic Real Estate Act and fast forwarding of the GST Bill.

Known for coining acronyms, Naidu termed the mission of the Modi Government as 'MODI- Making of Developed India' which had become the official line of the Center in its public outreach campaign on the occasion of three years of being in office.

As the minister for information and broadcasting, he was always quick to present issues in perspective with effective repartee as and when required.

As minister of urban development and housing and urban poverty alleviation, which was recently merged as Housing and Urban Affairs, Naidu pioneered the launch of several new urban missions, including the SmartCity Mission, Atal Mission, Swachh Bharat Mission and Housing for All.

As rural development minister, Naidu was instrumental in launching the hugely popular 'Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana'.

When the Congress swept the polls in Andhra Pradesh in 1978, Naidu got elected as MLA from Udayagiri Constituency as a Janata Party candidate.

He was re-elected on a BJP ticket when N.T. Rama Rao swept the polls in the state.

Read more: Latest on Presidential Election  |  Presidential poll sees near 100pc voting

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