A hardliner to his adversaries and a scholar politician to his admirers, Dr Murli Manohar Joshi is one of the top three leaders of BJP. He is a scholar, scientist and a charismatic mass leader.
His tremendous political wisdom lifted him from the ranks of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh to that of the Bharatiya Janata Party president during one of its most crucial phases. His early association with RSS played a major role in shaping Joshi's political thinking.
Joshi fought his first parliamentary election in the post-Emergency period of 1977 when he won from Almora after his Jan Sangh merged with the Janata Party.
He had his early education at Hindu High School, Chandpur and completed his higher education from Meerut College and Allahabad University.
Known for courting controversies, the 69-year-old BJP stalwart is often in the news for the wrong reasons. Recently, he was in the news due to the raging controversy over his proposal to reduce fees in the prestigious Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs).
Currently, Joshi holds charge of three ministries as India's Minister for Human Resources Development, Science & Technology and Ocean Development. This is his second stint as a Cabinet Minister. Earlier in the first Vajpayee Government in 1996, he was the Union Home Minister.
In 1977, he was elected to the Lok Sabha, and became the General Secretary of the Janata Party in Parliament. He was in the Rajya Sabha between 1992 to 1996.
Joshi enjoys a fulfilled family life with his wife Tarla and two daughters Priyamvada and Nivedita. He is a strong advocate of a modern, powerful and nuclear India.
He was elected to Lok Sabha successively thrice from 1996 a record in itself, from Allahabad.
Joshi is seeking a mandate for the record fourth consecutive term from Allahabad parliamentary constituency this time.