Ravi Shankar Prasad: A man of many parts

MUMBAI: The new man at the helm of the information and broadcasting ministry is reputed to be one of the rising stars of the Bharartiya Janata Party. 

Ravi Shankar Prasad was minister of state in the ministry of coal and mines and minister of state in the ministry of law and justice when the latest reshuffle thrust him into the glamorous I&B ministry on 29 January 2003. Glamorous because of Sushma Swaraj who came to be associated with it. And the flair and showmanship with which she ran the ministry.

Limited information is available about Prasad, the main source being relied for this piece is his biodata. A Virgo by birth (30 August 1954), Prasad was active during his university days as part of the Jayprakash Narain (JP) movement in Bihar. His efforts landed him in jail for a long time.

A lawyer by profession, he has specialised in writ, constitutional, civil service and criminal matters. Among his clients have figured: the Railways, and the Bihar Banking Service Recruitment Board and India's home minister LK Advani (who he is reportedly close to).

Additionally, he was the main arguing counsel in the Patna High Court in the public interest litigation leading to the CBI investigation into the infamous fodder and bitumen scam of Bihar strongman Laloo Prasad Yadav.

An active debator, he won many awards at the state and national levels during his college days, apart from being a mean table tennis player (ping-pong). He loves listening to classical music apart from guzzling literature mainly in the form of historical biographical and legal writing.

One of his passions is pursuing for civil liberty and human rights. As part of that he was also general secretary, People's Union for Civil Liberties Bihar. Finally Prasad is know to be keenly interested in international diplomacy and also working for the handicapped.

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