Kirti Azad

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Kirti Azad
Member of Parliament, Lok Sabha
In office
16 May 2009 – 23 May 2019
Preceded byMohammad Ali Ashraf Fatmi
Succeeded byGopal Jee Thakur
In office
Preceded byMohammad Ali Ashraf Fatmi
Succeeded byMohammad Ali Ashraf Fatmi
Personal details
Kirtivardhan Bhagwat Jha Azad

(1959-01-02) 2 January 1959 (age 63)
Darbhanga, Bihar, India
Political partyAll India Trinamool Congress (2021-Present)
Other political
Indian National Congress
(2019 – 2021)
Bharatiya Janata Party
(1999 - 2019)
SpousePoonam Azad
Cricket information
BowlingRight-arm offbreak
International information
National side
Test debut (cap 150)21 February 1981 v New Zealand
Last Test12 November 1983 v West Indies
ODI debut (cap 29)6 December 1980 v Australia
Last ODI18 April 1986 v Pakistan
Domestic team information
Career statistics
Competition Test ODI FC LA
Matches 7 25 142 72
Runs scored 135 269 6,634 1,521
Batting average 11.25 14.15 39.48 27.16
100s/50s 0/0 0/0 20/27 0/8
Top score 24 39* 215 94
Balls bowled 750 390 15,420 2,086
Wickets 3 7 234 50
Bowling average 124.33 39.00 30.72 27.48
5 wickets in innings 0 0 5 0
10 wickets in match 0 0 0 0
Best bowling 2/84 2/48 7/63 3/16
Catches/stumpings 3/– 7/– 95/– 22/–
Source: ESPNCricinfo, 19 August 2014

Kirtivardhan Bhagwat Jha Azad (pronunciation ; born 2 January 1959) is an Indian politician and former cricketer and who played seven Test matches and 25 One Day International for the India national cricket team between 1980 and 1986.

Azad was born in Darbhanga, Bihar,[1] the son of former Chief Minister of Bihar Bhagwat Jha Azad. He was an aggressive right-hand batsman and a quickish offspinner. A surprise choice for the tour of Australia and New Zealand in 1980–81, he made his Test debut at Wellington. He was part of the Indian team that won the 1983 Cricket World Cup.[2]

He won the 2014 Lok Sabha election for Darbhanga, Bihar. In February 2019, Kirti Azad joined Indian National Congress.[3] He joined Trinamool Congress (TMC) after meeting TMC chief Mamta Banerjee in Delhi on Nov 23, 2021.[4]

Domestic career[edit]

He attended Modern School in Delhi where he was part of the school cricket team. Azad, a nonconformist in many ways[further explanation needed], was a stalwart allrounder for Delhi for many years, and in 95 Ranji Trophy matches he scored 4867 runs at an average of 47.72 and took 162 wickets at and average of 28.91. His highest score was 215 against Himachal Pradesh in 1985–86.

International career[edit]

He was a surprise choice for the tour of Australia and New Zealand in 1980–81, making his Test debut at Wellington. He then played three Tests without much success against England in 1981-82 and was later picked for the 1983 World Cup.[2]

In his international career Azad played 7 test matches (1981–83) and 25 one-day-internationals (1980–86). Though full of potential, he couldn't take his domestic performance to the international level, scoring only 135 test runs and 269 in one-days. He picked 3 and 7 wickets in the two forms, respectively.[5]


He followed his father Bhagwat Jha Azad, former Chief Minister of Bihar,[6] into politics and was elected to Parliament on a Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) ticket from Darbhanga, Bihar. He served his second term in the Lok Sabha representing Darbhanga. He was previously an MLA from Delhi's Gole Market constituency.[7] He won the 2014 Lok Sabha Elections from Darbhanga.[8] On 23 December 2015 he was suspended from BJP for openly targeting Union finance minister Arun Jaitley over alleged irregularities and corruption in Delhi's cricket body Delhi and District Cricket Association.[9] Azad joined the Indian National Congress on 18 February 2019.[10] He fought General Election from Dhanbad Lok Sabha constituency for 2019 representing Indian National Congress, against BJP candidate Pashupati Nath Singh and lost it with a margin of 4.8 lakhs. In November 2021, Azad joined the All India Trinamool Congress ahead of the 2022 Goa Legislative Assembly election and said that he will work under Mamata Banerjee till retirement from politics.[11]

Personal life[edit]

Azad is married to Poonam and has two sons.[12] His elder son Suryavardhan has played for Delhi Under-17s, Under-19s and Under-22s, while his younger son Somyavardhan has played for Delhi Under-15s and Delhi Under-17s.[13][14]

His wife Poonam joined Aam Aadmi Party on 13 Nov 2016, which she then quit on 11 Apr 2017 to join the Indian National Congress.[15]

Views on IPL[edit]

Following a 2012 sting operation on players of the Indian Premier League (IPL), Azad came out in opposition of the tournament and demanded that it be banned.[16] Speaking about the Indian T20 team, he reportedly alleged that the players played for self rather than the country. He further said that he felt agitated and ashamed to be associated with the BCCI in the wake of the IPL controversy.

In popular culture[edit]

The 2021 Indian film 83, which is based on India's World Cup win, will feature Dinker Sharma portraying Azad's character.[17][18]


  1. ^ "Kirti Azad Supports Suresh Raina Amid Backlash Over 'Brahmin' Comment". Retrieved 15 December 2021.
  2. ^ a b "Kirti Azad". Cricinfo. Retrieved 6 March 2011.
  3. ^ "Rebel BJP MP Kirti Azad joins Congress". The Hindu. 18 February 2019.
  4. ^ "Congress leader Kirti Azad joins TMC". Economic Times. 23 November 2021.
  5. ^ "Kirti Azad". ESPN Cricinfo. ESPN Sports Media Ltd. Retrieved 2 August 2020.
  6. ^[dead link]
  7. ^ "A veteran-newcomer fight at Gole Market". The Hindu. Archived from the original on 4 September 2005. Retrieved 6 March 2011.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: unfit URL (link)
  8. ^ "Election LIVE: BJP's third candidate list out, Ram Kripal to contest from Patliputra against Lalu's daughter". 14 March 2014.
  9. ^ "Kirti Azad Suspended By BJP For Publicly Targeting Finance Minister Arun Jaitley". NDTV. Retrieved 24 December 2015.
  10. ^ "Cricketer-turned-politician Kirti Azad joins Congress". The Times of India. Retrieved 24 February 2019.
  11. ^ "Congress leader Kirti Azad joins TMC; says will work under Mamata Banerjee till retirement from politics". 23 November 2021.
  12. ^ "Detailed Profile: Shri Kirti (Jha) Azad". National Portal of India. Retrieved 7 January 2020.
  13. ^ "Surya Azad". CricketArchive. Retrieved 6 March 2011.
  14. ^ "Somyavardhan Azad". CricketArchive. Retrieved 3 September 2012.
  15. ^ "Kirti Azad's wife Poonam Azad Jha quits AAP, joins Congress". The Economic Times. Retrieved 11 April 2017.
  16. ^ "Kirti Azad begins hunger fast against IPL". IBNLive. Press Trust of India. 20 May 2012. Archived from the original on 23 May 2012. Retrieved 21 May 2012.
  17. ^ "Ranveer Singh introduces Dinker Sharma as Kirti Azad in '83' character poster". Business Standard India. Retrieved 21 March 2021.
  18. ^ "Ranveer Singh introduces Dinker Sharma as Kirti Azad in '83'". Free Press Journal. Retrieved 21 March 2021.