Chauhan was elected to UP state assembly for the first time in 2017.(PTI photo)
Chauhan was elected to UP state assembly for the first time in 2017.(PTI photo)

Chetan Chauhan’s political innings blossomed during Mandal-Mandir times

Chetan Chauhan returned to Uttar Pradesh to play the second innings of his life.
By hindustantimes.com | Edited by Abhinav Sahay | Hindustan Times, New Delhi
UPDATED ON AUG 16, 2020 09:31 PM IST

Former cricketer Chetan Chauhan had an equally successful political career which started during the times of Mandir- Mandal politics in the country in late 1980s.

Born in Uttar Pradesh’s Bareilly on 21 July 1947, Chauhan moved to Pune in Maharashtra in 1960 with his father, who was transferred there as an officer of Indian Army. He graduated from Wadia College in Pune, where his cricketing acumen was honed, but returned to UP for the second innings of his life in politics.

He was fielded as a BJP candidate from Amroha Lok Sabha seat in the general elections in 1991-- also referred to as Mandal-Mandir elections—due to the highly polarized and charged atmosphere over two main issues of Ram Janmabhoomi movement for the construction of a Ram Temple in Ayodhya and of Mandal commission, pertaining to reservations for the marginalized castes.

Chauhan won the elections with 58.96% votes defeating Janata Dal’s Har Govind, who returned with nearly 31.64% votes. He represented the seat for the next five years, while the Centre was ruled by PV Narasimha Rao led Congress government supported by the left parties. However, in 1996 elections, Pratap Singh Saini from Samajwadi Party won the Amroha seat, located north-west of Moradabad about 130 km away from Delhi and known for its mangoes.

Chauhan made a comeback in 1998 by defeating BSP’s Alley Hasan from Amroha. He polled more than 37% votes to defeat Hasan who could only muster little over 29% votes. A year later in 1999, he lost the elections to BSP’s Rashid Alvi.

During his tenure as Lok Sabha MP in 1998-99, Chauhan also served as a member on the parliamentary committee on finance and on the consultative committee for the ministry of human resource and development (HRD).

He also served as chairman of National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT) from June 2016 to June 2017.

In 2017, he won the assembly elections for Naugawan Sadaat seat by defeating SP leader Javed Abdi and was presently serving as the home guards minister in UP cabinet led by Yogi Adityanath.

He is the second minister in the UP cabinet to have succumbed to coronavirus disease after the death of Kamla Rani Varun on August 2.

Chauhan also proved his mettle as an administrator while serving the Delhi and Districts Cricket Association (DDCA) in various capacities. He was also appointed manager of the Indian Team during their tour of Australia.

73 year old Chauhan is survived by his wife Anita Chauhan and son Vinayak

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