H. D. Deve Gowda

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Haradanahalli Doddegowda Deve Gowda
12th Prime Minister of India
In office
1 June 1996 – 21 April 1997
President Shankar Dayal Sharma
Preceded by Atal Bihari Vajpayee
Succeeded by Inder Kumar Gujral
Minister of Home Affairs
In office
1 June 1996 – 29 June 1996
Preceded by Murli Manohar Joshi
Succeeded by Indrajit Gupta
Chief Minister of Karnataka
In office
11 December 1994 – 31 May 1996
Governor Khurshed Alam Khan
Preceded by Veerappa Moily
Succeeded by Jayadevappa Halappa Patel
Personal details
Born (1933-05-18) 18 May 1933 (age 81)
Haradanahalli, Mysore State, British India
(now in Karnataka, India)
Nationality Indian
Political party Janata Dal (Secular)
Other political
Indian National Congress (Before 1962)
Independent (1962–1977)
Janata Party (1977–1988)
Spouse(s) Chennamma Deve Gowda
Children 4 sons(H.D. Balakrishne Gowda
H.D. Revanna
Dr. H.D. Ramesh)
2 daughters[1]
Alma mater L V Polytechnic College
Religion Hinduism
Website hddevegowda.in
As of feb, 2012
Source: [[2][3]]

Haradanahalli Doddegowda Deve Gowda (born 18 May 1933)[3][4] was the twelfth Prime Minister of India (1996–1997) and the 14th Chief minister of the state of Karnataka (1994–1996).

He is a member of the 16th Lok Sabha representing the Hassan constituency of Karnataka and is the National President of the Janata Dal (Secular) party.[5] He is an influential leader of the Vokkaliga community and is popularly known as "Mannina maga" (Son of the soil) for espousing the cause of the farmers. Deve Gowda is known for his secular, anti-Caste and anti-Hindutva outlook.

Early life and education[edit]

Deve Gowda was born on 18 May 1933 in Haradanahalli village of Holenarasipura taluk, Hassan District, Karnataka. He earned his Diploma in Civil Engineering from Smt.L.V. Polytechnic, Hassan, Karnataka.[2] He married Smt. Chennamma and the couple have 4 sons and 2 daughters

His parents, Shri Dodde Gowda and Smt. Devamma were from a middle class agricultural background and is a vegetarian.[6][7] Hence, he was exposed to the hardships of farmers, early in his life and later became a champion of the farmers cause.[5]

Political career[edit]

Deve Gowda joined the Indian National Congress party in 1953 and remained its member until 1962.[8] During that period, He was the President of Anjaneya Cooperative Society of Holenarasipura and later became a Member of the Taluk Development Board, Holenarasipura taluk, Hassan.

In 1962, Deve Gowda was elected to the Karnataka Legislative Assembly from Holenarasipura constituency as an independent candidate. Later, He was elected from the same constituency to the Karnataka Legislative Assembly for six consecutive terms from 1962 to 1989. He joined the Congress(O) during the Congress split and served as the Leader of Opposition in the Assembly from March 1972 to March 1976 and again fron November 1976 to December 1977.[9] During the Emergency (1975–77), he was imprisoned in the Bangalore Central Jail.

Deve Gowda was twice the President of state unit of the Janata Party. He served as a minister in the Janata Party Government in Karnataka headed by Shri Ramakrishna Hegde from 1983 to 1988. He became President of the state unit of Janata Dal in 1994 and was the driving force behind the victory of the party in the 1994 State Assembly elections. He was elected from the Ramanagara constituency sworn in as the 14th Chief Minister of Karnataka in December 1994.

In January 1995, Deve Gowda toured Switzerland and attended the Forum of International Economists. His tour to Singapore, which brought in much needed foreign investment to the State, proved his business acumen.[8]

In the 1996 general elections, the Congress party headed by P.V. Narasimha Rao lost decisively but no other party won enough seats to form a government. When the United Front (a conglomeration of non-Congress and non-BJP regional parties) decided to form the Government at the Centre with the support of the Congress, Deve Gowda was unexpectedly chosen to head the government and became the 11th Prime Minister of India.[5] He took over as Prime Minister of India on 1 June 1996 and continued until 11 April 1997. Also, He was the Chairman of the Steering Committee of the United Front, the policy making apex body of all the constituents of the ruling front.[5]

He was nicknamed as Sleeping Gowda, due to his habit of napping in Lok Sabha and other official functions.[10][11] He is fluent in English.[12][13]

Janata Dal (Secular)[edit]

Deve Gowda inaugurating a function.

The Janata Dal (Secular) traces its roots back to the Janata Party founded by Jayaprakash Narayan who united all the opposition parties under one banner for the 1977 national elections.

The Janata Dal was formed on the merger of the Janata Party with smaller opposition parties in 1988. Vishwanath Pratap Singh became the first Prime Minister of India from Janata Dal when he headed the National Front government in 1989. Later Deve Gowda and Inder Kumar Gujral too became prime ministers heading the United Front (UF) coalition governments in 1996 and 1997 respectively.

In 1999, when some senior leaders of the party decided to join hands with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led NDA, the party split into many factions. Many secular leaders including the Late Madhu Dandawate joined the Janata Dal (Secular) faction headed by Deve Gowda, who became the National president of this faction.

He was defeated in the 1999 general elections but staged a comeback by winning the Kanakapura By-elections in 2002.

The 2004 elections in Karnataka witnessed the revival of his party’s fortunes with the Janata Dal (Secular) winning 58 seats and becoming a part of the ruling coalition in the state. Later, the party joined hands with the BJP and formed an alternate government in 2006. His son H. D. Kumaraswamy headed the BJP-JD(S) coalition government in the state for 20 months.[14][15] In the 2008 state elections, the party performed poorly and won just 28 seats but has remained a significant force in the South Karnataka.

Positions held[edit]

1962–89 : Member, Karnataka Legislative Assembly (seven terms)

1972–76 : Leader of Opposition, Karnataka Legislative Assembly

1983–88 : Minister for Public Works and Irrigation, Government of Karnataka

1991 : Elected to 10th Lok Sabha

1991–94 : Member, Committee on Commerce Member, Joint Parliamentary Committee on Fertilizers Member, Consultative Committee, Ministry of Agriculture

1994 : President, Janata Dal, Karnataka.

1994–96 : Chief Minister of Karnataka

Jun. 1996 – Apr. 1997 : Prime Minister of India and also in charge of Ministries/Departments of Petroleum and Chemicals, Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions, Atomic Energy, Home Affairs, Agriculture, Food Processing Industries, Urban Affairs and Employment and Non-Conventional Energy Sources

1996–98 : Member, Rajya Sabha

Nov. 1996-Apr. 1997 : Leader of the House, Rajya Sabha

1998  : Re-elected to 12th Lok Sabha (2nd term). National President, Janata Dal (Secular)

2002 : Re-elected to 13th Lok Sabha in a by-election (3rd term)

2004 : Re-elected to 14th Lok Sabha (4th term)

2006–2008 : Member, Committee on Railways

2009 : Re-elected to 15th Lok Sabha (5th term)

31 Aug 2009 : Member, Committee on Defence

Source: Lok Sabha Website[2]


While he declared assets worth 4.27Cr for the 2014 Lok Sabha elections,[16] it is alleged he and his family own assets well over Rs. 1500 crores in benami accounts[17]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "JDS LEADERS – Page 2". Janata.in. Retrieved 2012-08-04. 
  2. ^ a b c "Detailed Profile – Shri H.D. Devegowda – Members of Parliament (Lok Sabha) – Who's Who – Government: National Portal of India". India.gov.in. Retrieved 2012-08-04. 
  3. ^ a b "Shri H. D. Deve Gowda". Pmindia.nic.in. Retrieved 2012-08-04. 
  4. ^ "Profile on website of Home Minister's Office". 
  5. ^ a b c d "Jds Leaders". Janata.in. Retrieved 2012-08-04. 
  6. ^ "Asiaweek article". Retrieved 2007-09-30. 
  7. ^ "New Indian Express article". Retrieved 2014-03-28. 
  8. ^ a b Home Minister's Office
  9. ^ "Janata Dal (Secular)". Janatadalsecular.org.in. Retrieved 2012-08-04. 
  10. ^ "'Sleeping Gowda' remains unruffled by critics". 
  11. ^ "Gowda upset over seeing his sleeping photo". Times of India. 27 Jul 2003. 
  12. ^ Chand, Attar (1997). Prime Minister H.D. Deve Gowda: The Gain and the Pain (A Biographical Study). New Delhi: Gyan Publishing House. pp. 143–149. ISBN 81-212-0558-1. Retrieved January 18, 2014. 
  13. ^ Burns, John F. (June 23, 1996). "Indian Premier's Roots May Be Clue to His Course". NYTimes.com. The New York Times. Retrieved January 18, 2014. 
  14. ^ "Janata Dal Secular". Janata.in. Retrieved 2012-08-04. 
  15. ^ "Janata Dal (Secular)". Janatadalsecular.org.in. Retrieved 2012-08-04. 
  16. ^ "H.D. Deve Gowda declares assets worth Rs. 4.27 crore". The Hindu. Staff Correspondant. 26 March 2014. Retrieved 11 June 2014. 
  17. ^ "Deve Gowda family's known assets worth over Rs 1,500 cr: BJP". The Economic Times. PTI. 28 June 2011. Retrieved 11 June 2014. 

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Atal Bihari Vajpayee
Prime Minister of India
Succeeded by
Inder Kumar Gujral