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Arvind Kejriwal

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Name- Arvind Kejriwal

DOB- 16 August 1968 Siwani, Haryana, India

Known as- 7th Chief Minister of Delhi

Father- Gobind Ram Kejriwal

Mother- Gita Devi

 


 

Early Life and Education

He was born on 16 August 1968, in Siwani, Haryana, as the eldest child of Gobind Ram Kejriwal and Gita Devi. He has two younger siblings. His father was an electrical engineer and the family moved often because of his work. His mother was a well-educated woman for her time and ensured that her children focused on their studies well. Arvind was sent to Campus School in Hisar before he attended a Christian missionary school at Sonipat. He was a loner and an avid reader. He was also a religious and spiritually inclined teenager.

A bright student at school he was confused about choosing a career path. Initially he wanted to become a doctor but changed his mind and opted for engineering instead. On learning that the Indian Institute of Technology was the best for engineering studies, he set his heart on getting into the prestigious institute. He appeared for the test and cleared it in his first attempt. Thus, he joined IIT Kharagpur, in West Bengal, choosing mechanical engineering as his stream.

His college experience was an eye-opener for him. While many of his classmates planned to go abroad after graduation, he decided to stay in India and do something for his country. He received job offers from Oil and Natural Gas Corporation and Gas Authority of India, but had set his mind on getting into Tata Steel, a company that had rejected him in their interview round. The determined Kejriwal called the company headquarters and requested another interview. This time he was chosen.

 

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Career

In 1989, he was placed in a training program at Tata Steel and then assigned as assistant manager in Jamshedpur. In spite of getting into his dream company he was not happy with the job; in fact he found it quite boring. He decided to further his studies and attempted to get into a prestigious management institute but was turned down. Then on the advice of a friend he decided to study for the Civil Service Examination. By 1992, he realized that his true calling was in serving the society and quit his lucrative job even as he waited for the results of the Civil Service Examination. Meanwhile he met Mother Teresa and worked at her Kalighat Ashram for two months. He then joined the Christian Brothers Association and also did village work with Ramakrishna Missions. In addition he did some outreach work in the rural areas with a government organization called Nehru Yuva Kendra (Nehru Youth Center).

Having cleared all the rounds of the Civil Service Examination, he joined the Indian Revenue Service (IRS) in 1995. But again he was disillusioned with his job. Exposed to rampant corruption from the very beginning, he realized that this was not what he had imagined government service to be. He helped found a movement called Parivartan in 1999 while working with the Income Tax Department. This movement helped expose a fake ration card scam and assisted the citizens of Delhi in matters related to income tax, electricity and food rations. In order to focus on social causes, he resigned from his position as a Joint Commissioner of Income Tax in New Delhi in 2006. He established the Public Cause Research a few months later.

Kejriwal gained in popularity when he became associated with the prominent social activist Anna Haraze in early 2010s while campaigning for the passing of the Jan Lokpal bill. However, he later split from Team Anna and formed his own political party, Aam Aadmi Party, along with his supporters in 2012. He soon became well-known among the Indian masses for his fight against corruption and defeated Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit in the 2013 Delhi Legislative Assembly election. He took office as the Chief Minister on 28 December 2013. The citizens of Delhi had great expectations from him but he resigned after just 49 days on 14 February 2014, as he found it wasn’t possible to pass the Jan Lokpal Bill, with the current strength of his party. On February 10, 2015, Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Admi Party (AAP) trounced the BJP (the ruling party at the center) in the Delhi Assembly elections 2015. Out of 70 seats in the assembly, the AAP won 67, leaving just 3 to the mighty BJP. On February 14, 2015, Arvind became the Chief Minister of Delhi as his Aam Admi Party (AAP) formed the government in Delhi.

 

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Personal life

In 1995, Arvind married Sunita, a 1993-batch IRS officer. She took voluntary retirement in 2016 as Commissioner of Income Tax in the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal.

The couple has a daughter named Harshita, and a son named Pulkit. Kejriwal is a vegetarian and has been practising the Vipassanā meditation technique for many years. He is diabetic.

 

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