Born On: May 12, 1952
Born In: Thiruchengode, Tamil Nadu
Died On: August 23, 2000
If you are familiar with Indian politics, you surely would know a thing or two about Phanindranath Rangarajan Kumaramangalam. However, if you don't happen to know much about him, here's presenting a way of discovering the man that Rangarajan Kumaramangalam was. As far as a career goes, he was most noted for his contributions to Indian politics. He was a significant member of the Indian National Congress, but later on transferred his loyalties to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Rangarajan Kumaramangalam was also a Member of Parliament (Lok Sabha). He won his ticket to the Parliament for the first time in 1984 from the Salem constituency and for the second time in 1998 from the Tiruchirapalli constituency. He also served as the Minister of State for Law, Justice and Company Affairs during the tenure of the then Prime Minister of India, P. V. Narasimha Rao. From 1998 to 2000, he served as the Union Minister for Power. This was when the Vajpayee government enjoyed power. Read on to know more about the life that Rangarajan Kumaramangalam led and the career path he built for himself.
Early Life And Family
Rangarajan Kumaramangalam was born on May 12, 1952 into a family of Zamindars who hailed from Thiruchengode. This family itself was a very prominent one in the social circle. He was the grandson of Paramasiva Subbarayan who was the Chief Minister of the Madras Province from 1925 to 1926 and also a prominent Cabinet Minister in the reigns that followed. His father, Mohan Kumaramangalam, was one of the most important organizers of the undivided Communist Party of India while his uncle, Paramasiva Prabhakar Kumaramangalam, was a World War-II veteran and served as the 7th Chief of Staff of the Indian Army from 1967 to 1970. R. Kumaramangalam's mother, Kalyani Mukherjee, belonged to one of the most famous political families from West Bengal and was the sister of Ajoy Mukherjee who later became the chief minister of Bengal. Looking at the larger picture, coming from a family like that, R. Kumaramangalam's rise in politics came as no surprise.
As a student, Rangarajan almost always found himself involved actively in student politics. This was just a stepping stone to the top. He went on to become one of the founding members and the first president of the National Students Union of India (NSUI). He was made the 'leader' of the NSUI, by none other than Indira Gandhi, the then Prime Minister of India, who Rangarajan was a big fan of. In the year 1973, political success came his way when he was elected to the All India Congress Committee. The year 1977 saw him gaining a degree from Kirori Mal College, Delhi University, after which he shifted base to Madras to practice law. Fortunately for him, Congress came to power again in 1980. This was when he was asked by Rajiv Gandhi to play more prominent roles in politics, which he duly did. The year 1984 saw Rangarajan contesting to become a Member of Parliament from the Salem Lok Sabha constituency. Needles to say, Rangarajan won the elections and found himself being a part of the Lok Sabha.
In the year 1991, P.V. Narasimha Rao, the then Prime Minister of India made Rangarajan Kumaramangalam the Minister of State for Law, Justice and Company Affairs. Later however, he found himself at loggerheads with the direction the government was going in. In 1992, he wrote to the Prime Minister explaining why he was not too pleased with the steps of reform the government was taking. This sparked rumors that revolved around the resignation of Rangarajan but they were only rumors. In 1993, however, he did resign as Cabinet Minister and followed this up by quitting the Indian National Congress in 1995. He then went on to create his own party Congress (T), but lost miserably at the 1996 Parliamentary elections.
In 1997, with a surprise move, Rangarajan Kumaramangalam joined the BJP and contested for a seat in the Lok Sabha from the Tiruchirapalli constituency. He soon managed to become the face of the BJP in Tamil Nadu and served as the Union Minister for Power and Parliamentary Affairs. He also took up an additional responsibility of taking charge of Law, Justice and Company Affairs and Mines. As a part of the BJP, he did this twice, for the first time from 1998 to 1999 and the second time from 1999 until his death.
Rangarajan Kumaramangalam breathed his last on August 23, 2000 after losing a battle to acute myeloid leukemia (blood cancer). He died at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences.
1952: Born into a family of Zamindars who hailed from Thiruchengode
1973: Elected to the All India Congress Committee
1984: Contested Parliamentary elections and won a Lok Sabha seat for himself
1991: Became the Minister of State for Law, Justice and Company Affairs
1993: Resigned as Cabinet Minister
1995: Quit the Indian National Congress and founded Congress (T)
1997: Joined hands with the BJP
1998: Became the Union Minister for Power
2000: Breathed his last at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences.