Former Finance Minister and veteran BJP leader Arun Jaitley passed away on Saturday, August 24 at AIIMS. He was known for his brilliant oratory skills and an intellect with which he posed his views on a variety of topics including politics and finance.
Further, he was closely associated with cricket and even served as the President of Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) between 1999-2013. Moreover, he also later associated with the BCCI.
- Arun Jaitley was considered a brilliant student, having pusued his education at St Xavier’s School, New Delhi. After graduating from Shri Ram College, he passed his law degree from the University of Delhi. Like his father he practiced law later.
- In college, Arun Jaitley was the student leader of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) in Delhi University (DU) Campus and later became the President of the Delhi University Student’s Union in 1974.
- As a lawyer, he represented the Pepsi Company in a 2002 Supreme Court case against the Coca Cola company. He moved on from law practice in 2009.
- An active participant protesting the Emergency imposed by former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in 1975, he was arrested under preventive detention for 19 months. After being released, he joined the Jan Sangh, the parent party of today’s BJP.
- He has also held the post of Additional Solicitor General of India from 1989-90.
- As a leader of the Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP), he had held various portfolios since 1999 including Ministry of Commerce and Industry, Law and Justice and Information and Broadcasting. He became a Rajya Sabha MP in 2009.
- He was considered one of the most trusted aides of former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee, who promoted him to Cabinet rank only after a year.
- As a cricket lover, Jaitley was closely associated with the sport. He was the DDCA President while later becoming a vice president of BCCI. However, he resigned after IPL spot-fixing scandal.
- Following the death of BJP leader Pramod Mahajan and Vajpayee’s retirement, Jaitley came up as the chief strategist of the party.
- The massive victory of BJP in 2014 Lok Sabha elections has been credited to this master strategist. However, he lost to Congress’ Amarinder Singh from Amritsar seat in the elections.