Ravi Shankar Prasad

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Ravi Shankar Prasad
Ravi Shankar Prasad At Office.jpg
Minister of Communications and Information Technology
Assumed office
26 May 2014
Prime Minister Narendra Modi
Preceded by Kapil Sibal
Minister of Law and Justice
In office
26 May 2014 – 9 November 2014
Prime Minister Narendra Modi
Preceded by Kapil Sibal
Succeeded by D. V. Sadananda Gowda
Personal details
Born (1954-08-30) 30 August 1954 (age 61)
Patna, India
Political party Bharatiya Janata Party
Spouse(s) Maya Shankar
Alma mater Patna University
Profession Lawyer

Ravi Shankar Prasad (born 30 August 1954) is an Indian lawyer, politician and the current Union Minister holding Communications and Information Technology portfolio in the Government of India. A member of the Bharatiya Janata Party, Prasad represents the state of Bihar as a Member of Parliament in the Rajya Sabha.[1] During the NDA Government under Atal Bihari Vajpayee's prime ministership, Prasad 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.[2] He is also a designated senior advocate in the Supreme Court of India.

Early life and education[edit]

Prasad was born in a Kayastha family in Patna, Bihar.[3] His father Thakur Prasad was a senior advocate at the Patna High Court and one of the founders of the Jan Sangh, the predecessor of the Bharatiya Janata Party. Prasad earned BA Hons, MA (Political Science) and LL.B degrees from Patna University and has a son and a daughter.[4]

Law career[edit]

Prasad has been practising at the Patna High Court since 1980. He was designated senior advocate at the Patna High Court in 1999 and Senior Advocate at the Supreme Court of India in 2000.[5]

Prasad was the main lawyer arguing the PIL against former Bihar chief minister Lalu Prasad Yadav in the fodder scam that led to the jailing of several politicians and officials, including Lalu Prasad. He is the lawyer in the Ayodhya Ram temple title suit case representing 'Ram Lalla', the deity, in the case. He has represented former Deputy Prime Minister L. K. Advani and has appeared in several leading cases including Narmada Bachao Andolan Case, T. N. Thirumulpad environment cases, Bihar assembly dissolution case among others.[6]

Political career[edit]

Prasad began his political career as a student leader in the 1970s organising protests against Indira Gandhi's government and was also jailed when the emergency was imposed by Gandhi's government in 1977. He worked in the student movement in Bihar under the leadership of Jayaprakash Narayan and was an active volunteer of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP). He was associated with Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh and ABVP for many years and held various posts in the organisations. 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.[4] Prasad has held several national-level assignments in the youth wing and the main party organisation of the BJP. 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.

He became a Member of Parliament in 2000 and became the Minister of State (Coal and Mines) in 2001 under Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Soon after taking over, Prasad accelerated the reforms process in the mining and coal sectors. In July 2002, he was given the charge of Ministry of Law and Justice (State). He prepared a bill to amend the Representation of People Act with in a fortnight in 2002. In 2003, he became the information and broadcasting minister. He is responsible for introducing reforms in the radio, television and animation which improved the quality and functioning of these sectors. He helped establish Goa as the location of the International Film Festival of India. He also led the Indian delegation to film festivals in Cannes, Venice and London.[4]

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.

Prasad became a national spokesperson of the BJP in 2006 and was elected to the Rajya Sabha from Bihar in the same year. He has adopted the village of Alawalpur under Fatuha block of Patna district as a model village to be developed under the Pradhan Mantri Adarsh Gram Yojana.[citation needed] He was appointed as the Chief National Spokesperson of the BJP in 2007 and in 2010, he 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 lead BJP in the Rajya Sabha as Deputy Leader of Opposition.

After the victory of BJP led NDA in 2014 general elections, Narendra Modi was elected as the Prime Minister of India. On 26 May 2014, Prasad took oath as Union Minister and was allotted the portfolios of Law and Justice, and Communications & Information Technology.[1][4]

Personal life[edit]

On 3 February 1982, Prasad married Maya Shankar who is a historian and professor of history at Patna University. His sister, Anuradha Prasad is married to Congress leader and former minister Rajeev Shukla and she is the managing director of News 24.[5][7]


He launched Social Endeavor for Health and Telemedicine (SEHAT) health initiative in India on 25 August 2015.[8]


  1. ^ a b "Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad assumes charge of the Law & Justice Ministry". India: Press Information Bureau. Archived from the original on 1 June 2014. Retrieved 1 June 2014. 
  2. ^ "Ravi Shankar Prasad set to become BJP deputy leader in RS". The Times of India. PTI. 19 July 2012. Retrieved 28 August 2013. 
  3. ^ Vyas, Hari Shankar (7 April 2013). "Brahmins in Congress on tenterhooks". The Pioneer. Retrieved 1 June 2014. 
  4. ^ a b c d "Ravi Shankar Prasad: The new telecom minister may find his hands full". www.firstpost.in. Retrieved 1 June 2014. 
  5. ^ a b "Prasad Returns to Union Cabinet with a Bag of Experience". The New Indian Express. PTI. 26 May 2014. Retrieved 1 June 2014. 
  6. ^ "Team Modi: Ravi Shankar Prasad – Lawyer of 'Ram Lalla'". India Today (26 May 2014). Retrieved 1 June 2014. 
  7. ^ "Interview: Anuradha Prasad, Managing Director, BAG films". www.bestmediainfo.com. Best Media Info. Archived from the original on 13 January 2014. Retrieved 1 June 2014. 
  8. ^ "Govt launches Sehat telemedicine initiative". Live Mint. Retrieved 28 August 2015. 

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Kapil Sibal
Minister of Law and Justice
Succeeded by
D. V. Sadananda Gowda
Minister of Communications and Information Technology