Ravi Shankar Prasad
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|Ravi Shankar Prasad|
|Ravi Shankar Prasad Delivering A Speech At UN|
August 30, 1954 |
Patna in Bihar
|Political party||Bharatiya Janata Party|
Ravi Shankar (born 30 August 1954) is an Indian lawyer and politician, deputy Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, the upper house of the Parliament of India. He is a member of right wing Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and a distinguished senior advocate at the Supreme Court of India. He represents Bihar in the Rajya Sabha. He held the position of Minister of State in the Ministry of Coal and Mines, the Ministry of Law and Justice, and the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting during the National Democratic Alliance government under the leadership of Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. He was elected to the Rajya Sabha for the third term.He is a member of BJP and RSS.
Prasad was born into a prominent family of Patna, capital city of Bihar. His father Thakur Prasad was a senior advocate at the Patna High Court and one of the founders of the Jan Sangh, which is now the BJP. Ravi Prasad earned BA Hons, MA (Political Science) and LLB degrees from Patna University. He married Maya Shankar on February 3, 1982. Maya is a professor of history at Patna University.
Prasad began his political career as a student leader in the 1970s organising protests against Indira Gandhi's government. He worked in the student movement in Bihar under the leadership of Jayaprakash Narayan and was imprisoned during the Emergency. He was associated with Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad for many years and held various posts in the organisation. During his college days he was Assistant General Secretary of the Patna University Students Union and member of the Senate, Finance Committee, Arts and Law Faculties of the University.
Prasad was the main lawyer arguing the Public Interest Litigation against former Bihar Chief Minister and Railway Minister Laloo Prasad Yadav in the Fodder scam and Bitumen scam cases. He has represented former Deputy Prime Minister L. K. Advani and the Bihar Banking Service Recruitment Board before the Patna High Court. His high-profile cases include the Landmark Narmada Bachao Andolan Case, T. N. Thirumulpad v. Union of India, Rameshwar Prasad v. Union of India (the Bihar Assembly Dissolution Case), and Yash Pal's case on medical education in India.
Prasad has held several national-level assignments in the youth wing and the main party organisation of the BJP. He became a Member of Parliament in 2000 and became the Minister of State (Coal and Mines) in 2001 under Prime Minister A.B. Vajpayee. Soon after taking over, Prasad accelerated the reforms process in the mining and coal sectors.
Prasad was given the additional charge of Minister of State in the Ministry of Law and Justice in July 2002. Within a fortnight he had prepared a bill amending the Representation of People Act. He sped up the process of fast-track courts.
In April 2002, he led the Indian delegation to the Non-Aligned Movement's ministerial meet in Durban, South Africa. Later he met Yasser Arafat in Ramallah as a member of a Non-Aligned delegation to express solidarity with him. He led the Indian delegation to the Commonwealth Law Minister Summit in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. He has led the Indian delegation to film festivals in Cannes, Venice and London.
Since 1995 Prasad has been a member of BJP National Executive, the party's top policymaking body. Recently, he oversaw the party's efforts in the Uttarakhand Assembly Elections.
Prasad became a national spokesperson of the BJP in 2006 and was elected to the Rajya Sabha from Bihar in the same year. He was appointed as the Chief National Spokesperson of the BJP in 2007 In 2010, Prasad was appointed as the General Secretary of the BJP. In 2012, Prasad was re-elected to the Rajya Sabha from Bihar for a consecutive 3rd term and will now lead the Bharatiya Janata Party in the Rajya Sabha as Deputy Leader of Opposition.
- "BJP names Ravishankar Prasad deputy leader of opposition in Rajya Sabha". The Times of India. TNN. 2012-07-20. Retrieved 2013-08-28.
- "Ravi Shankar Prasad set to become BJP deputy leader in RS". The Times of India. PTI. 2012-07-19. Retrieved 2013-08-28.