Sharad Chandra Govindrao Pawar, 68, describes himself as an agriculturist by profession, but for the last 42 years the Maratha strongman has remained in the thick of Indian politics broad-basing his grass roots much beyond Maharashtra.
Pawar, who has also been steering the cricketing affairs of the country, starts his second innings as Union Minister for Agriculture, Food and Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs having seen the lows and highs of the farm sector in the last five years.
Known for his knack of always being on the winning side, the NCP supremo, who parted ways with the Congress a decade back, has never lost an assembly or a Lok Sabha election.
Pawar takes over the reigns of the agriculture affairs when the country has harvested a bumper foodgrain production and the government-owned godowns are overflowing with wheat and rice.
From a situation when India had to go in for imports in 2006, the situation has dramatically changed in the last two years, so much so that lifting ban on exports of wheat and non-basmati rice could be the first major administrative decision in the coming days.