Alphons Kannanthanam

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Alphons Kannanthanam
Alphons Kannanthanam (2019).jpg
Minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology
Assumed office
3 September 2017
Prime MinisterNarendra Modi
Preceded byP. P. Chaudhary
Minister of State (Independent Charge)
Assumed office
3 September 2017
Prime MinisterNarendra Modi
Preceded byDr. Mahesh Sharma
MP of Rajya Sabha for Rajasthan
Assumed office
9 November 2017
Member of Kerala Legislative Assembly
In office
Personal details
Born (1953-08-08) 8 August 1953 (age 65)
Manimala, Travancore-Cochin, India
Political partyBharatiya Janata Party[1][2]
Children2 sons (Akash Alphons & Adarsh Alphons)

Alphons Joseph Kannanthanam (born 8 August 1953) is an Indian civil servant, advocate, and politician. He is currently serving as the Union Minister of State for Culture, and Tourism, in office since 3 September 2017 under the B.J.P. Government of Narendra Modi.

He is the second BJP Central Minister from Kerala after O. Rajagopal. Kannanthanam belongs to the 1979 batch of the Indian Administrative Service (I.A.S.), Kerala cadre. He was in Time Magazine's list of 100 Young Global Leaders. He pioneered the literacy movement in India by making Kottayam the first 100% literate town of India in 1989. He served as Commissioner of the Delhi Development Authority.

Alphons was born in Manimala, Kottayam district, Kerala, India, and was a Left Front independent Member of the Legislative Assembly for Kanjirappally in Kottayam district, Kerala from 2006 to 2011.[4] He joined the Bharatiya Janata Party in 2011.

Early life and education[edit]

Alphons was born in Manimala, Kottayam District, to K. V. Joseph and Brijith Joseph. His father was a World War II veteran who became a school teacher after the war. His parents had nine children; they adopted two more from the orphanage.

Alphons received his early education in Malayalam medium village schools near his place of birth. He completed his Master's in Economics from delhi.and was one of the toppers of the Civil Services Examination in the year 1979.


Alphons was recruited to the Indian Administrative Service in 1979 and served for 27 years. He voluntary retired from the service in 2006. He was later elected a Member of the Legislative Assembly, from Kanjirappally in Kottayam District, Kerala with the support of Communist Party of India (Marxist)-led Left Democratic Front (LDF). He is also a practicing advocate in the High Court of Kerała at Kochi and the Supreme Court of India.

Alphons first came into prominence when he served as the district collector of Kottayam in 1988. He drove the literacy movement in the state and helped to make Kottayam town as the first 100% literate town in India in 1989.

His national profile rose as the Commissioner of the Delhi Development Authority, he demolished illegal buildings and reclaimed land worth more than Rs. 10,000 crores.[5] These actions earned him the title, The Demolition Man.[6] Times of India survey showed that 89.6% of Delhiites supported his action, the highest rating for any public official any time.[7] The action also listed him in Time magazine's 100 young global leaders in 1994 (cover story 5 December 1994).[8]

In 2006, he resigned from the IAS and entered politics by becoming an LDF supported independent Member of the Legislative Assembly from Kanjirappally.[9]

On 24 March 2011, Alphons joined the BJP in the presence of erstwhile party president Nitin Gadkari, after having resigned from his assembly seat a couple of hours prior.[10]

He has been appointed as a Member of Committee constituted by Government of India on 26 June 2017 to prepare the final draft of National Education Policy. [11]

In a cabinet reshuffle on 3 September 2017, he was appointed as minister of state in the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology and minister of State (independent charge) of the Ministry of Tourism.[12] On 9 November 2017, Alphons was elected unopposed as Rajya Sabha member from Rajasthan.[13]

On 20th August he turned down the demand of Congress leaders to declare Kerala flood of 2018 as a "national calamity" and said there was no provision in the Disaster Management Act 2005 to do so.[14]

Alphon's recent post[15] on facebook about Kerala flood in which he seen to be sleeping in a relief camp, made him a target for trolls through social media[16].


  1. ^ "Kerala B.J.P leader Alphons Kannanthanam could become Chandigarh administrator". The Indian Express. Retrieved 25 April 2017.
  2. ^ "BJP accords reception to Alphons Kannanthanam". The Hindu. Retrieved 25 April 2017.
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ Kerala Members of Legislative Assembly Archived 2010-01-30 at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^
  6. ^ Demolition Man
  7. ^ "Achievements". Archived from the original on 2 February 2009. Retrieved 15 April 2010.
  8. ^ "Time Magazine's Young Leaders". Archived from the original on 19 February 2010. Retrieved 15 April 2010.
  9. ^ Kerala Assembly Election Results, 2006
  10. ^
  11. ^ "Government constitutes a committee to prepare the final draft of National Education Policy". Retrieved 2017-06-27.
  12. ^ "Cabinet reshuffle: Alphons Kannanthanam appointed a MoS in ministry of IT". The Economic Times. 3 September 2017. Retrieved 3 September 2017.
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^

External links[edit]

Official website