Smt. Vasundhara Raje, Hon'ble Chief Minister, Rajasthan
Smt. Vasundhara Raje, who is committed and dedicated to welfare of the general public through politics and social service, was born on March 8, 1953 at Mumbai. She is 4th amongst five children of the then Rajmata of Gwalior State Smt. Vijaya Raje Scindia and Maharaja Jeevaji Rao. She completed her school education at Presentation Convent, Kodaikanal. After that she graduated in Economics and Political Science (Honours) from Sofia College, Mumbai University, Mumbai (Maharashtra). She got married to the former Maharaja of Dholpur State Sh. Hemant Singh on November 17, 1972. Then on, Smt. Raje association with Rajasthan started which got intensed and stronger with passage of time. She has a son.
Smt. Raje got the samskar of social service and political activism from her mother Smt. Vijaya Raje Scindia. She started participating actively in public welfare services from her childhood. She adopted the culture of service to the mankind in the atmosphere of political and public service she was brought up in.
Smt. Raje started her public life with her being nominated as member in the national executive of Bhartiya Janata Party in 1984. She held the post of vice-president of the state Bhartiya Janata Yuva Morcha in 1985-87 and 1987-89. She represented Dholpur constituency in the State Assembly between 1985 and 1989. After remaining vice president of the state unit of Bhartiya Janata Party, in 1989 she was elected to the Lok Sabha from Jhalawar constituency. Then on, she continued to represent the same constituency in the Lok Sabha for five times consequently in 1991, 1996, 1998 and 1999. She held the position of joint secretary of parliamentary board. Between 1989 and September 2002 Smt. Vasundhara Raje remained the member of state and national executives of Bhartiya Janata Party.
As a result of her dedication and efficiency to work Smt. Vasundhara Raje was given the responsibility of the Minister of State in the Union Council of Ministers led by Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee in 1998-99, which she accomplished proficiently. On October 13, 1999 Smt. Raje was inducted again in the Union Council of Ministers as a Minister of State and she was given responsibility of the Small Industries, Personnel & Training, Pension & Pensioners Welfare, Personnel & Public Grievances ministries, Atomic Energy Department and Space Department.
Smt. Vasundhara Raje was appointed as the state president of Bhartiya Janata Party from September 12, 2002 to December 7, 2003. During this period she carried out intensive rallies in the entire state during her Parivartan Yatra to understand problems of general public and obstacles in the path of development.
She was elected to the 12th Rajasthan Assembly from Jhalrapatan constituency of Jhalawar. Smt. Vasundhara Raje has the honour of being the first woman Chief Minister of Rajasthan from December 8, 2003 to December 10, 2008. During her tenure she gave utmost priority to comprehensive development and empowerment of the deprived sections of Rajasthan. Programmes like Akshaya Kaleva, Mid-Day Meal Scheme, Panna Dhay, Bhamashah Scheme, Hadi Rani Batalion and other woman empowerment schemes were initiated during her rule. She was re-elected to 13th Rajasthan Assembly from Jhalrapatan constituency of Jhalawar. She remained the Leader of Opposition in Rajasthan Assembly between January 2, 2009 and February 25, 2010.
Smt. Raje was entrusted with the state presidentship of Rajasthan Bharatiya Janata Party for the second time on February 8, 2013. She took a 14,000 kilometer long yatra to travel the state and establish a direct dialogue with the general public about their grievances and problems during her Suraaj Samkalp Yatra. She has been elected again to 14th Rajasthan Assembly from Jhalrapatan constituency of Jhalwar.
Smt. Raje has special interest in reading, music, horse-riding and gardening. With a motive of public welfare she has visited England, Japan, China, Bangladesh, Greece, Morocco, Srilanka, South Korea and other countries. Smt. Raje was honoured with Women Together Award by the United Nations Organisation in year 2007 for her exemplary contribution towards woman empowerment.
On December 9, 2013, Smt. Raje has been unanimously elected as the leader of newly-elected legislators of Bharatiya Janata Party. She has now taken over the reins of the state government for the second time on December 13, 2013. Smt. Raje has envisioned for Rajasthan to be a comperhensively developed and modern state which stands in the frontline in regard to development. She has targeted to bring happiness on the face of every citizen of the state. Empowerment of the specially-abled, deprived and poor sections of the society is her first priority.