Kerala Kaumudi Online
Tuesday, 16 April 2024 1.45 PM IST

Governor Arif Muhammad Khan to resign and contest in Loksabha elections?


THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: Rumors are rife that Governor Arif Muhammad Khan, who has gained national attention after constant disagreements with the state government, will resign and contest for the Lok Sabha from North India.

The Governor, whose tenure is till September, has suggested expeditious disposal of pending files, and the constant political maneuvering in Delhi has fueled such rumors. The 73-year-old Arif Khan is expected to become a Union Minister if he wins. Earlier, he had vied for the post of Vice President, but the position went to Jagdeep Dhankar, who was the Governor of Bengal. Khan joined the BJP in 2004.

Arif Mohammad Khan, closely related to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and top BJP leaders, is likely to be presented by the BJP as a minority face. He is a leader who can accommodate the Hindutva stance of the BJP. Khan has openly stated that he has been a member of the RSS for decades. Khan took charge as the 22nd Governor of Kerala on September 6, 2019. He hails from Bulandshahr, Uttar Pradesh.

Khan, who entered the UP Assembly at the age of 26, is the youngest minister in Uttar Pradesh. He started with Charan Singh's Bharatiya Kranti Dal and progressed through the Congress. Later, he challenged the Congress and joined the BJP via the Janata Dal.

He served as the Union President of the Aligarh Muslim University under the banner of the Freedom Party. Recognizing his potential, Indira Gandhi brought him to the Congress and appointed him as AICC joint secretary.

From Kanpur to the Lok Sabha in 1980, he became the Union Minister of State for Information and Distribution in 1982. He secured a second term as a Lok Sabha member from Bahraich in UP. He became a confidant of Rajiv Gandhi after Indira's death.

During the Shabanu case, Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi initially supported the Supreme Court's verdict that Muslim women should receive alimony but later, upon hearing arguments from the Muslim Personal Law Board, altered his stance.

The government introduced the Muslim Divorce Protection Act in 1986 to override the Supreme Court ruling. Protesting against it, Khan moved to the backbenches of the Lok Sabha and tendered his resignation from the ministry before the law was passed. He parted ways with the Congress.

After leaving the Congress, he joined the Janata Dal through the Jan Morcha along with V P Singh. VP Singh appointed him as the Aviation Minister in the government. Later, he joined Mayawati's BSP. He won from Bahraich with the support of Congress, Janata Dal and BSP parties.

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