Arun Jaitley

Arun Jaitley (28 December 1952 – 24 August 2019)[3] was an Indian politician and attorney. A member of the Bharatiya Janata Party, Jaitley served as the Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs of the Government of India from 2014 to 2019.

Arun Jaitley
Jaitley in 2015
Minister of Finance
In office
26 May 2014  30 May 2019
Prime MinisterNarendra Modi
Preceded byP. Chidambaram
Succeeded byNirmala Sitharaman
Minister of Corporate Affairs
In office
26 May 2014  30 May 2019
Prime MinisterNarendra Modi
Preceded bySachin Pilot
Succeeded byNirmala Sitharaman
Minister of Defence
In office
13 March 2017  3 September 2017
Prime MinisterNarendra Modi
Preceded byManohar Parrikar
Succeeded byNirmala Sitharaman
In office
26 May 2014  9 November 2014
Prime MinisterNarendra Modi
Preceded byA. K. Antony
Succeeded byManohar Parrikar
Minister of Information and Broadcasting
In office
9 November 2014  5 July 2016
Prime MinisterNarendra Modi
Preceded byPrakash Javadekar
Succeeded byVenkaiah Naidu
Leader of the Opposition, Rajya Sabha
In office
3 June 2009  26 May 2014
Preceded byJaswant Singh
Succeeded byGhulam Nabi Azad
Minister of Law and Justice
In office
29 July 2003  22 May 2004
Prime MinisterAtal Bihari Vajpayee
Preceded byJana Krishnamurthi
Succeeded byH. R. Bhardwaj
In office
7 November 2000  1 July 2002
Prime MinisterAtal Bihari Vajpayee
Preceded byRam Jethmalani
Succeeded byJana Krishnamurthi
Leader of the House, Rajya Sabha
In office
26 May 2014  11 June 2019
Preceded byManmohan Singh
Succeeded byThawar Chand Gehlot
Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting
In office
13 October 1999  30 September 2000
Prime MinisterAtal Bihari Vajpayee
Preceded byJaipal Reddy
Succeeded bySushma Swaraj
Member of Parliament, Rajya Sabha
In office
3 April 2018  24 August 2019
Preceded byNaresh Agrawal
Succeeded bySudhanshu Trivedi[1] [2]
ConstituencyUttar Pradesh
In office
3 April 2000  2 April 2018
Succeeded byNaranbhai Rathwa
Personal details
Arun Maharaj Kishen Jaitley

(1952-12-28)28 December 1952
Delhi, India
Died24 August 2019(2019-08-24) (aged 66)
New Delhi, India
Political partyBharatiya Janata Party
Sangeeta Jaitley
(m. 1982; his death 2019)
ChildrenSonali Jaitley Bakhshi
Rohan Jaitley
ResidenceNew Delhi, Delhi, India (Hons) , L.L.B
Alma materDelhi University
WebsiteOfficial website

Jaitley previously held the cabinet portfolios of Finance, Defence, Corporate Affairs, Commerce and Industry, and Law and Justice in the Vajpayee government and Narendra Modi government. From 2009 to 2014, he served as the Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha.[4][5] He was a Senior Advocate of the Supreme Court of India.[6][7][8] He oversaw the introduction of the Goods and Services Tax which brought the country under one GST regime, demonetisation, merger of Railway budget with general budget and introduction of Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code.[9][10][11] Jaitley decided not to join the second Modi Cabinet in 2019, due to health issues.[12][13]

Early life

Arun Jaitley was born on 28 December 1952 in Delhi. His father Maharaj Kishen Jaitley was a lawyer and mother Ratan Prabha Jaitley a housewife.[14] He studied at St. Xavier's School, Delhi from 1957–69.[15] He graduated with the honours degree in commerce, BCom. from Shri Ram College of Commerce, New Delhi in 1973. He passed his LLB degree from the Faculty of Law, University of Delhi, in 1977.[16][17][18]

Jaitley was the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) student leader at the Delhi University Campus in the seventies and rose to be the President of the Students Union of Delhi University in 1974. During the period of proclamation of Internal Emergency (1975–77) when fundamental rights were suspended, he was under preventive detention for a period of 19 months.[19] He was a prominent leader of a movement against corruption launched in the year 1973 by Raj Narain and Jayaprakash Narayan. He was the convener of the National Committee for Students and Youth organisation appointed by Jai Prakash Narayan.[20] He was also active in civil rights movement and helped found PUCL Bulletin along with Satish Jha and Smitu Kothari.[17][21] After being released from jail, he joined the Jan Sangh.

In 1977, being the convener of the Loktantrik Yuva Morcha at a time when the Congress suffered defeat, Jaitley was appointed the president of the Delhi ABVP and All India Secretary of the ABVP. He was then made the president of the youth wing of the BJP and the secretary of the Delhi Unit in 1980, a short time after joining the party.[22]

Since 1987, Jaitley had been practising law in the Supreme Court of India and several High Courts in India.[4] In January 1990, he was designated as a Senior Advocate by the Delhi High Court.[5][23] He was appointed Additional Solicitor General by the V. P. Singh government in 1989 and did the paperwork for the investigations into the Bofors scandal.[21][22] His clients cover the political spectrum from Sharad Yadav of the Janata Dal to Madhavrao Scindia of the Indian National Congress to L. K. Advani of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Several publications on legal and current affairs were written by him.[4] A paper on law about corruption and crime in India was presented by him, before the Indo-British Legal Forum.[4] He was appointed as the Government of India's delegate to the United Nations General Assembly Session in June 1998 which approved the Declaration on Laws Relating to Drugs and Money Laundering.[5][4]

Jaitley had also appeared on behalf of giant multinational corporations such as PepsiCo against Coca-Cola and in various other cases in India.[24][25] After having been the Minister of Law, Justice and Company Affairs, Jaitley represented Pepsi in 2002 in a case where the Supreme Court of India admonished and imposed stiff fines on 8 companies for painting advertisements on ecologically fragile rocks along the Manali-Rohtang road in the Himalayas. "The companies were also issued show-cause notices as to why exemplary damages should not be imposed on them for indulging in environmental vandalism."[26] In 2004, Jaitley appeared on behalf of Coca-Cola in a Rajasthan High Court case.[27]

Given his political duties as Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, Jaitley stopped practising law in June 2009.[28]

Political career

Jaitley had been a member of the national executive of Bharatiya Janata Party since 1991.[29] He became the spokesperson of the BJP during the period preceding the 1999 general election.

Vajpayee Government

On 13 October 1999, after the Vajpayee Government of the BJP led National Democratic Alliance came to power, he was appointed Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting (Independent Charge).[4] In addition he was appointed Minister of State for Disinvestment (Independent Charge). The disinvestment ministry was created for the first time in accordance with the policy of disinvestment under the World Trade Organization regime.[4] On 23 July 2000 following the resignation of Ram Jethmalani as the Union Cabinet Minister of Law, Justice and Company Affairs, he took over his ministry as an additional charge.[4]

In November 2000 and was made a Cabinet Minister for the Ministry of Law, Justice and Company Affairs and Shipping. The Ministry of Surface Transport was bifurcated and he was appointed as the first Minister of Shipping. He demitted the office of the Minister for Shipping with effect from 1 September 2001 and as Union Minister of Law, Justice and Company Affairs on 1 July 2002.[4] He then served as the General Secretary of the BJP and its national spokesman.[4] He worked in this capacity till January 2003. He rejoined the Union Cabinet as the Minister of Commerce & Industry and Law & Justice on 29 January 2003.[22] With the defeat of the National Democratic Alliance in May 2004, Jaitley returned to his legal career and worked in the Supreme Court.[30]


He was chosen as the Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha on 3 June 2009 by L.K. Advani. On 16 June 2009, he resigned from the post of General Secretary of BJP as per his party's One Man One Post principle. He was also a member of the Central Election Committee of the party.[31] As the leader of opposition in Rajya Sabha, he participated in the debates on the Women's Reservation Bill in the Rajya Sabha and also supported Anna Hazare in his 2011 Indian anti-corruption movement for the Jan Lokpal Bill.[22] He successfully introduced the eighty-fourth amendment to the Constitution of India in 2002 freezing parliamentary seats until 2026[32] and the ninety-first amendment to the Constitution of India in 2004 penalising defections.[33] However, being in the party since 1980 he never contested any direct election until 2014. He was the BJP candidate for the Amritsar seat in the Lok Sabha (replacing Navjot Singh Sidhu) for the 2014 general election, but lost to the Indian National Congress candidate Amarinder Singh. He was nominated as a Rajya Sabha member from Gujarat. He was re-nominated to the Rajya Sabha from Uttar Pradesh in March 2018.[34]

On 26 August 2012, he said (outside Parliament) "There are occasions when an obstruction in Parliament brings greater benefits to the country." This statement was considered to have given legitimacy to obstruction of the parliament in the contemporary politics in India. After forming a government in 2014, the BJP government has faced disruption and obstruction in parliament multiple times, and the opposition have referred to this statement as a legitimate floor strategy.[35][36]

NDA led Government of India

On 26 May 2014, Jaitley was selected by newly elected Prime Minister Narendra Modi to be the Minister of Finance, the Minister for Corporate Affairs and the Minister of Defence, in his cabinet.[37][38] Analysts cited Jaitley's "part-time" focus on defence as a simple continuation of the policies of the previous government.[39] According to a WikiLeaks cable by Robert Blake, the Charge at the US Embassy, to his government, when pressed on the question of Hindutva, Jaitley had argued that Hindu nationalism "will always be a talking point" for the BJP and characterised this as an opportunistic issue.[40] Jaitley later clarified that "the use of the word opportunistic in reference to nationalism or Hindu nationalism is neither my view nor my language. It could be the diplomat's own usage."[41]

During the 2015 Bihar Legislative Assembly election, Arun Jaitley agreed with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's assertions that the idea of reservations on the basis of religion is fraught with danger and was against giving reservations to Muslim Dalits and Christian Dalits as it might impact demography.[42][43] He also serves as a member to the Board of Governors of Asian Development Bank.[44] In November 2015, Jaitley said that personal laws governing marriages and divorces should be subject to fundamental rights, as constitutionally-guaranteed rights are supreme.[45] He announced the Income declaration scheme, 2016 in September 2016.[46]

During his tenure as the Finance Minister of India, the government demonetised the ₹500 and ₹1000 currency notes, with the stated intention of curbing corruption, black money, fake currency, and terrorism from 9 November 2016.[47] He oversaw the introduction of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) which brought the country under one GST regime. On 20 June 2017, he reaffirmed that the roll-out of GST overseen by him as the finance minister was on track.[48]

Out Leadership recommended Arun Jaitley as one of the experts and leaders who openly speak on LGBT+ issues.[49]

On 29 May 2019, in a letter to Prime Minister Modi, Arun Jaitley cited his health as a reason for not taking an active role in the formation of the new government, effectively declining a role as a minister in the second term of Prime Minister Modi.[50]

Personal life

Arun Jaitley married Sangeeta, daughter of former Jammu and Kashmir finance minister Girdhari Lal Dogra, on 25 May 1982. They have two children, Rohan and Sonali; the latter married Jaiyesh Bakhshi.[51][4][52][53] Both his children are lawyers. He had two siblings.[54] Delhi's Feroz Shah Kotla Stadium was renamed as Arun Jaitley Stadium on 12 September 2019 at a function held at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium.[55]

Illness and death

Jaitley suffered from a series of health-related issues and underwent multiple surgeries leading into his deteriorating health and subsequent death in 2019. In 2005, he underwent a coronary artery bypass surgery after he was diagnosed of high blood pressure.[56] In 2014, when he weighed 117 kilograms (258 lb), a gastric bypass surgery was performed on him aimed at reducing his weight. Doctors confirmed that Jaitley had been "suffering from diabetes for nearly two decades" then, and that the said procedure was the best option for patients suffering from "uncontrolled diabetes".[57] In May 2018, he underwent a kidney transplant surgery.[58]

In February 2019, the media reported that Jaitley had been diagnosed with a rare form of soft-tissue sarcoma and was undergoing treatment in the US, although it was termed a "regular medical check-up".[59] On 9 August, he was admitted to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi (AIIMS) after he complained of "breathlessness".[60][61] On 17 August, it was reported that he was on life-support.[62] By 23 August, his health had deteriorated.[63]

Jaitley died at 12:07 p.m. (IST) the following day, aged 66.[64][65] He was cremated at Nigam Bodh Ghat on 25 August.[66] The Indian Cricket team wore black armbands for a day during the test match with the West Indies, to condole Jaitley's death.[67]


In January 2019 Jaitley generated controversy when he accused the Central Bureau of Investigation of investigative adventurism in the ICICI Bank - Videocon fraud case.[68] The Central Bureau of Investigation had named Chanda Kochhar and her husband Deepak Kochhar as beneficiaries in the financial fraud, in which Venugopal Dhoot, the promoter of Videocon had fraudulently transferred part of the loan received from ICICI Bank to the Kochhar's business entreprise[69] Jaitley stated that naming the corrupt bank officials will not help in the investigation.[70]

Previously in September 2012, Jaitley had warned CBI on corruption cases involving political leaders from Gujarat.[71]


  1. "BJP nominates Sudhanshu Trivedi to Arun Jaitley's Rajya Sabha seat in UP". The Indian Express. 3 October 2019. Retrieved 3 October 2019.
  2. "BJP names Sudhanshu Trivedi for Rajya Sabha By polls from Uttar Pradesh". Times of India. 3 October 2019. Retrieved 3 October 2019.
  3. "Former India finance minister Arun Jaitley dies". BBC News. 24 August 2019.
  4. "Arun Jaitley — A Profile". PIB Press Releases. Press Information Bureau. 30 January 2003. Archived from the original on 6 January 2016. Retrieved 25 October 2012.
  5. "Hall of Fame – Top 50" (PDF). J. Sagar Associates. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2 December 2012. Retrieved 5 May 2013.
  6. Khandelwal, Avani (10 July 2014). "Who is Arun Jaitley: The rise of India's newest finance minister". Daily News and Analysis. Retrieved 3 February 2016.
  7. Arun Jaitley is no 'outsider' to Amritsar Archived 30 March 2014 at the Wayback Machine – Niticentral
  8. "Arun Jaitley, the eyes and ears of Modi". The Indian Express. 26 May 2014. Retrieved 3 February 2016.
  9. "Arun Jaitley: An unforgettable stint as India's Finance Minister". Hindu Businessline. 24 August 2019. Retrieved 24 August 2019.
  10. "Arun Jaitley, the man who brought India under one-tax regime". India Today. 24 August 2019. Retrieved 24 August 2019.
  11. Team, BS Web (24 August 2019). "Career timeline of Arun Jaitley, PM Modi's go-to man in New Delhi". Business Standard India. Business Standard. Retrieved 24 August 2019.
  12. "Arun Jaitley opts out of new government for health reasons". The Economic Times. 30 May 2019. Retrieved 30 May 2019.
  13. "Arun Jaitley writes letter to PM Modi, opts out of new Cabinet citing health reasons". The Times of India. 29 May 2019. Retrieved 30 May 2019.
  14. Goyal, Shikha (16 August 2019). "Arun Jaitley: Biography and Political Journey". Jagran. Retrieved 20 August 2019.
  15. "My memorable School days at St. Xaviers". Arun Jaitley. Archived from the original on 12 February 2013. Retrieved 17 February 2013.
  16. "Member Profile: Arun Jeitley". Rajya Sabha. Retrieved 17 February 2013.
  17. "Shri Arun Jaitley, Honb'le Minister of Law, Justice and Company Affairs, Shipping, Bharatiya Janata Party". Press Information Bureau, Government of India. 1999. Archived from the original on 24 July 2009. Retrieved 24 October 2008.
  18. "Cabinet reshuffle: Modi government's got talent but is it being fully utilised?", The Economic Times, 10 July 2016
  19. "Cometh The Hour..." Outlook. Retrieved 3 June 2014.
  20. Singh, Justice Manmohan. "Mr. Arun Jaitley vs Network Solutions Private Limited". Delhi High Court. Retrieved 6 May 2013.
  21. "Sorry". The Indian Express. Retrieved 25 October 2012.
  22. Khandelwal, Avani (10 July 2014). "Who is Arun Jaitley: The rise of India's newest finance minister". Daily News and Analysis. Retrieved 6 September 2014.
  23. "List of Senior Advocates designated by Delhi High Court upto August, 2014" (PDF). Delhi High Court. Retrieved 6 September 2014.
  24. "Cola war now goes to court".
  25. "SC stays contempt proceedings against Coke, Pepsi". The Economic Times.
  26. "SC imposes Rs 1 cr cost on firms for defacing rocks". The Times of India.
  27. "Court blow to cola giants". The Telegraph1. Calcutta. 5 November 2004.
  28. "Arun Jaitley recuses himself from decisions on Vodafone tax case". Business Today. PTI. 19 June 2014. Retrieved 6 September 2014.
  29. "Rajya Sabha Members Homepage – Arun Jaitley". Rajya Sabha. Retrieved 5 May 2013.
  30. "Arun Jaitley from the eyes of a legal practitioner [Column]". Bar & Bench. 24 August 2019. Retrieved 24 August 2019.
  31. "Central Election Committee". BJP. Archived from the original on 20 February 2011. Retrieved 6 May 2013.
  32. Arun Jaitley introduced the 84th Amendment to freeze parliamentary seats until 2026
  33. Arun Jaitley introduced the 91st Amendment to penalize defections(pdf)
  34. "RS polls: BJP trumps opposition, makes it nine out of ten seats in UP", The Times of India, 24 March 2018
  35. Manoj C G (27 July 2015). "View from the Earlier Side: When Jaitley saw 'benefits to the country' in obstructing Parliament". Indian Express.
  36. "'Disrupting Parliament is important': BJP's words from opposition days come back to haunt it". 24 December 2014.
  37. "Narendra Modi government: Full list of portfolios and ministers". The Indian Express. 27 May 2014.
  38. "Corporate Affairs Ministry to be 'clubbed' with Finance Ministry". The Economic Times. 27 May 2014.
  39. Raghuvanshi, Vivek (7 September 2014). "Analysts: New Modi Government Lacks Clear Defense Policy". Defense News. Retrieved 7 September 2014.
  40. "WikiLeaks cable on Arun Jaitley's 'opportunistic' remark". NDTV. 26 March 2011. Retrieved 3 February 2016.
  41. "Arun Jaitley denies remark in WikiLeaks cable". NDTV. 26 March 2011. Retrieved 3 February 2016.
  42. Chaturvedi, Rakesh Mohan (30 October 2015). "Bihar polls: Grand Alliance's idea of reservations on the basis of religion is fraught with danger, says FM Arun Jaitley". The Economic Times.
  43. Chaturvedi, Rakesh Mohan (30 October 2015). "All those who are involved in the traditional caste psyche will suffer a big setback: FM Arun Jaitley". The Economic Times.
  44. "Arun Jaitley appointed to Board of Governors of Asian Development Bank". Biharprabha News. Indo-Asian News Service. Retrieved 2 June 2014.
  45. "Personal law should be subject to fundamental rights: Jaitley | India News - Times of India". The Times of India.
  46. IDS 'Major Success' Compared to VDIS, Says Arun Jaitley, News 18, 18 November 2016
  47. "Rs 500, Rs 1000 currency notes stand abolished from midnight: PM Modi", The Indian Express, 9 November 2016
  48. "Will be switching to GST regulation from June 30 midnight: FM Arun Jaitley". The Economic Times. 20 June 2017. Retrieved 20 June 2017.
  49. "CEO Brief: India" (PDF). New York: Out Leadership. 8 June 2017. Archived from the original (PDF) on 3 September 2017. Retrieved 3 September 2017.
  50. "Arun Jaitley calls it a day". 20 June 2017. Retrieved 29 May 2019.
  51. Chatterjee, Ashok (24 April 2004). "Knot for everybody's eyes". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 23 January 2019. Retrieved 25 October 2012.
  52. "Profiles of Rajya Sabha Members (needs selection)". Rajya Sabha. Retrieved 6 September 2014.
  53. "Arun Jaitley's daughter Sonali gets married". The Indian Express. 8 December 2015. Archived from the original on 23 January 2019. Retrieved 23 January 2019.
  54. "An eyewitness to history: We were a Partition family, says Arun Jaitley". Hindustan Times. 28 May 2016. Retrieved 28 May 2016.
  55. "Delhi's Iconic Feroz Shah Kotla to be Renamed as Arun Jaitley Stadium". News18. 27 August 2019. Retrieved 27 August 2019.
  56. "Jaitley undergoes bypass surgery, stable". 11 July 2005. Retrieved 26 August 2019.
  57. Jha, Durgesh Nandan (3 September 2014). "Arun Jaitley undergoes weight loss surgery". The Times of India. Retrieved 26 August 2019.
  58. "Arun Jaitley stable after kidney transplant at AIIMS". The Economic Times. Press Trust of India. 14 May 2018. Retrieved 26 August 2019.
  59. Kohli, Namita (2 February 2019). "The veiled tumour". The Week. Retrieved 26 August 2019.
  60. "Arun Jaitley Passes Away due to health reasons". News Nation. 24 August 2019. Retrieved 24 August 2019.
  61. "President Ram Nath Kovind visits AIIMS to inquire about Arun Jaitley's health". Times of India. 16 August 2019. Retrieved 16 August 2019.
  62. Perappdan, Bindu Shajan (17 August 2019). "Arun Jaitley put on life support, say AIIMS sources". The Hindu. Retrieved 18 August 2019.
  63. "Arun Jaitley's health deteriorates, say AIIMS sources". The Hindu. 24 August 2019.
  64. "Arun Jaitley passes away at 66". India Today. Retrieved 24 August 2019.
  65. "Arun Jaitley Passes Away due to health reasons". News Nation. 24 August 2019. Retrieved 24 August 2019.
  66. DelhiAugust 25, Press Trust of India New; August 25, 2019UPDATED; Ist, 2019 10:14. "Arun Jaitley to be cremated at Nigambodh Ghat today". India Today. Retrieved 25 August 2019.
  67. AntiguaAugust 24, Asian News International; August 24, 2019UPDATED; Ist, 2019 19:00. "India vs West Indies: Virat Kohli's men to wear black armbands to condole Arun Jaitley's death". India Today. Retrieved 1 September 2019.
  68. "Arun Jaitley Targets CBI over Kochhar Probe". The Economic Times. Retrieved 27 January 2019.
  69. "Who is Who named by CBI in Chanda Kochhar Case". Indian Express. Retrieved 27 January 2019.
  70. "Arun Jaitely Targets CBI over Chanda Kochhar Case - Times of India". The Times of India. Retrieved 4 October 2018.
  71. "Jaitely Warns CBI over Gujarat Leaders". The Times of India. Retrieved 27 January 2019.
This article is issued from Wikipedia. The text is licensed under Creative Commons - Attribution - Sharealike. Additional terms may apply for the media files.