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Modi 3.O Cabinet: Nitin Gadkari takes oath as Union Minister

New Delhi: Bharatiya Janata Party leader and Nagpur MP Nitin Gadkari took oath as Union Cabinet Minister at Rashtrapati Bhavan on Sunday.
Gadkari won the Lok Sabha elections from the Nagpur constituency, defeating his nearest Congress rival by a margin of 1,37, 603 votes.
He polled 6,55,027 votes against 5,17,424 votes received by Congress' Vikas Thakre in 20 rounds of counting.
BSP candidate Yogesh Lanjewar came third with 19,242 votes, while 5,474 votes went to NOTA.
However, Gadkari's winning margin went down by 78,397 in this election. In 2019, he had defeated Congress' Nana Patole by 2,16,000 votes.
The BJP leader first contested from the constituency in 2014 when he won by 2,84,828 votes.
Nitin Gadkari was born on May 27, 1957 in a Maharashtrian family with roots in agriculture in the orange-city Nagpur.
By the mid-seventies, the optimism of the early years of Independence was replaced with disillusionment. Disenchantment was building up among various sections of the society. The imposition of Emergency in 1975 only precipitated the angst of a betrayed populace. The extent of excesses carried out by the government then shook Gadkari out of his comfort zone. As a student, he aggressively campaigned against the Emergency.
Gadkari got involved very closely with the Rashtriya Swayam Sevak Sangh (RSS) and the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) and took to social work in a big way. He was particularly inspired by the RSS founder K. B. Hedgewar's ideals of Humanity and nation-building.
Gadkari entered politics as a student leader of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarathi Parishad (ABVP) and later joined the Janata Yuva Morcha, the youth wing of the BJP.
The BJP leader has been a member of the Maharashtra Legislative Council since 1989. He was also the leader of the opposition in the Maharashtra Legislative Council from 1999-2005. He headed the Maharashtra Pradesh BJP till 2009 as the State president, when he was elevated to the post of BJP National President to become the youngest-ever party president.
The BJP leader was a PWD minister in Maharashtra between 1995 and 1999 when he gained his first experience undertaking infrastructure projects.
Gadkari was appointed the president of the BJP in December 2009. This was considering a tough phase for the BJP as the party had lost two successive Lok Sabha elections and needed a quick revamp.
Gadkari resigned as party president in January 2013 and became the Minister of Road Transport and Highways and Minister of Shipping in May 2014.
During the second term of the BJP-led central government in 2019, Gadkari retained the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways, while the Ministry of Shipping and the Ministry of Water Resources, River Development, and Ganga Rejuvenation were replaced with the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises on May 31, 2019.
The counting of the 2024 Lok Sabha elections was held on Tuesday. According to the Election Commission of India, the BJP won 240 seats, much lower than its 2019 tally of 303.
The Congress, on the other hand, registered a strong growth, winning 99 seats. The INDIA bloc crossed the 230 mark, posing stiff competition, and defying all predictions.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi has secured a third term, but the BJP will need to rely on the support of other parties in his coalition - JD (U) chief Nitish Kumar and TDP's chief Chandrababu Naidu.
BJP fell 32 seats short of the 272 majority mark after votes polled in the 2024 Lok Sabha elections were counted. For the first time, since the Bharatiya Janata Party swept to power in 2014, it did not secure a majority on its own.

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