Cabinet expansion: SS Ahluwalia - The man known to speak his mind

SS Ahluwalia
From being a minister in the P V Narasimha Rao Cabinet to a 'research scholar' for BJP on various key legislations, Surendrajeet Singh Ahluwalia has links cutting across party lines and is known to speak his mind.

The Patna-based politician is known for taking stand which at times is contrary to the party's position.

As a minister in the Rao government, he had openly attacked the then Congress chief Sitaram Kesri, also from Bihar, for the way he handled the party affairs.

During a discussion in the Lok Sabha on a bill to amend the Negotiable Instruments Act, he spoke against the measure moved by Finance Minister Arun Jaitley.

The BJP did not nominate him to the key Public Accounts Committee of Parliament due to his poor attendance in panel meets.

As chairman of Joint Parliamentary Committee on the contentious land bill, the Asansol-born politician has ensured that the political divide in the panel does not disrupt the proceedings.

After joining BJP, he has often proved to be an asset for the party. When BJP was in opposition, Ahluwalia, who turned 65 yesterday, played a key role as a member of the JPC on 2G scam. Going through heaps of papers, making notes and finding ammunition to target the rival have been his forte.

Even when he was no more an MP, he was tasked to go through the recommendations of the various standing committees and suggest the party leadership what necessary amendment should be brought when key bills come up for discussion in Parliament.

Ahluwalia, who prefers wearing bright-coloured turbans, is fluent in Bengali, Bhojpuri, Hindi, English and of course Punjabi.

A member of the Lok Sabha from Darjeeling, Ahluwalia was previously a Member of Parliament representing Bihar and Jharkhand in the Rajya Sabha in 1986-1992, 1992-1998, 2000-2006, and 2006-2012.

He was also the Deputy Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha till 2012 when he lost his seat from Jharkhand.

Dear Reader,

Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.

We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

Business Standard is now on Telegram.
For insightful reports and views on business, markets, politics and other issues, subscribe to our official Telegram channel