Kalraj Mishra: Minister after first Lok Sabha win (Profile)
Kalraj Mishra, sworn in as cabinet minister Monday, was a reluctant and recent entrant into electoral politics, having spent most of his political career in Uttar Pradesh as a member of the legislative council and a minister in successive BJP governments.
A member of the Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh since 1963 and minister of medical education and tourism in the Kalyan Singh, Ram Prakash Gupta and Rajnath Singh governments in the state, Mishra fought his first direct election in 2012 when the BJP fielded him from the Lucknow East assembly constituency.
Though the Samajwadi Party romped home with an absolute majority under Akhilesh Yadav, Mishra won his seat. He later endeared himself to his electorate by pursuing small but crucial developmental projects.
Easily accessible to party colleagues and voters alike, Mishra is known in political circles as a "happy-go-lucky Brahmin" who is content playing second fiddle to his peers and never one to defy the party line.
Pushed to contest the parliamentary polls from Deoria in eastern Uttar Pradesh, Mishra was not keen. But he finally took the plunge and won the tough seat for the BJP with a good margin of two lakh plus votes.
Fond of good food and deeply religious, Mishra excels in doing things, his aides say.
(Posted on 26-05-2014)