Dharmendra Pradhan retains portfolio as education minister

BJP leader Dharmendra Pradhan was sworn in as cabinet minister under the newly-elected Modi government on June 9.

Dharmendra Pradhan is union education minister for the third time. (Image: Official X account/Dharmendra Pradhan)Dharmendra Pradhan is union education minister for the third time. (Image: Official X account/Dharmendra Pradhan)

Vagisha Kaushik | June 10, 2024 | 08:18 PM IST

NEW DELHI: Dharmendra Pradhan retained the former position as the union education minister for the third time in the third term of prime minister Narendra Modi’s government. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader who was the education and skill development minister in the last Modi government, took oath as the union minister on June 9 along with the other cabinet ministers.

Taking to X (formerly Twitter), the minister said, “I am grateful, I am overwhelmed! I am heartily thankful to the respected Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi ji for giving me the responsibility of serving Mother India again by including me in the Union Council of Ministers for the third time. It is my great fortune to contribute to this yagya of fulfilling the aspirations of the countrymen and fulfilling Amrit Sankalps under the leadership and guidance of Prime Minister Modi ji.”

In 2021, Pradhan was made the union minister for education and skill development and entrepreneurship. During his portfolio as the education minister, he was tasked with the implementation of the new National Education Policy (NEP).

Pradhan returned to the Lok Sabha after 15 years as he won from Sambalpur in Odisha. Popularly known as the "Ujjwala" man, Pradhan is credited with being the longest serving union minister for petroleum and natural gas. He made his Lok Sabha debut in 2004 from Deogarh in Odisha and was elected to the Rajya Sabha from Bihar in 2012.

Charge of skill development, entrepreneurship ministry

In a cabinet reshuffle in 2017, he was elevated to the cabinet rank for the petroleum and gas ministry, with an additional charge of the Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship. He again was made a cabinet minister in the second Modi government.

Dharmendra Pradhan began his political career in 1983 as an ABVP activist and was elected as its secretary. He also worked as an election in-charge in Bihar and as the in-charge of party affairs in Uttarakhand, Karnataka, Odisha and Jharkhand.

The minister hails from Talcher and is the son of Debendra Pradhan, who was a minister of state in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government between 1999 and 2004. He received a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from the Talcher Autonomous College and Utkal University. He also holds an MA degree in political science from the Sambalpur University.

With inputs from PTI

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