Biography of Indian Governor Surjit Singh Barnala

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Biography of  Tamil Nadu Governor – Surjit Singh Barnala

The governor of the state of Tamil Nadu, India Surjit Singh Barnala is well regarded for his honesty. Surjit Singh Barnala is the present Governor of the state of Tamil Nadu, India since November 2004.

This tallest and oldest anti Congress leader has contributed a long political career in Indian politics.

He has served as the Governor of the four states and also was the Chief Minister of Punjab. Twice, Surjit Singh Barnala was a Minister in the Union Cabinet and was also nominated for Vice-Presidential candidate.

He went to jail nine times for various political agitations and spent in all, three and a half years in jail.

This anti Congress Leader was born on 21st October 1925 in Ateli village, now a part of Haryana to father Nar Singh. He was born to a well-to-do family, as his father was a magistrate. At the tender age of nine, his father passed away. Sri Surjit Singh Barnala had struggled hard for acquiring education.

After doing matriculation, he went to Lucknow for higher studies. In the year 1946, he received his degree in Law from Lucknow University. During his stay at Lucknow, in 1942, he plunged into the Quit India Movement. During the movement he was arrested.
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Surjit Singh Barnala is married to Surjit Kaur Barnala and the couple has one daughter and three sons. The youngest son was killed in an accident in 1996. They have seven grand-children.

He started his career with practicing Law in District Court at Barnala. But in the late 60’s he started his political career vigorously. In the 1952 election, he stood but lost by a margin of four votes.

He was elected as MLA from Barnala Assembly Constituency in the year1967, and thus delineated the Constituency till 1999. In the year1969, he was made the Education Minister of Punjab. And during his tenure, he was played a subservient role in establishing Guru Nanak Dev University in Amritsar.

In the year 1977, when he was elected as MP, for the first time he was inducted as Cabinet Minister in Janata Party`s Government headed by Morarji Desai. He was given the portfolios of Agriculture, Food, Irrigation and Rural Development.

From 29th September 1985, Barnala has served as the chief minister of Punjab until 11th May 1987. As the member of Sikh political party Shiromani Akali Dal, he was seated at the chair of Chief Minister in a very difficult and turmoil period of Punjab.

It was a period of terrorism in Punjab. The state at that time, from 1983 to 1985, had been under president`s rule. Barnala was crowded out after nearly two years in office, and the state was put under president`s rule for another three years.

Surjit Singh Barnala has served as the governor of several states since then. From 1990 to 1991, he was first appointed as the governor of Tamil Nadu. He served as the governor of Uttarakhand from its formation in 2000 until 2003.
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After that from 2003 to 2004, he has served as the governor of Andhra Pradesh. During that period he was also the acting Governor of Orissa. On November 2004, he took up his current post as governor of Tamil-Nadu.

Barnala also contested for the post of the vice-president of India in the year 1997, but was defeated by Krishna Kant. According to the observers, in spite of being a candidate of the opposition, Barnala received the additional affirmed with at least 45-50 members of the ruling United Front and Congress, which reflects the popularity of his cutting across the party line.

For the third time when he was selected to the Indian Parliament, by then he made his path smother towards becoming the Prime Minister of the Country. He delineated India in the United Nations, F.A.O., S.A.R.C. and other international organizations for that he has traveled widely.

Mountains always interest him. He is also fond of painting, reading and writing. Surjit Kaur Barnala is a true nature lover.

This passive and honest personality has also authored a book “Story of an Escape” which has been translated into several languages. Natraj Publishers, Dehradun, published its second edition as “Quest for freedom – Story of an escape”.

The President of India Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam released the book. It has been published in Punjabi, Telugu, Tamil, Hindi and Urdu and has been set in Brail also.

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