Shivraj Patil is the Union Home Minister in the Manmohan Singh government. He belongs to the Indian National Congress. He became the Home Minister in 2004.
A former Lok Sabha speaker (1991-1996), Shivraj Patil lost in the 2004 polls from Latur constituency in Maharashtra, but has still landed up the second most important position in the Union Cabinet.
First inducted in the Indira Gandhi-led government in 1980-82 as Minister of State for Defence, he was given independent charge of the Commerce Ministry between 1982-83, from where he was shifted to Science and Technology.
In the Rajiv Gandhi government, he was Minister for Personnel, Defence production and later held the independent charge of Civil Aviation and Tourism.
He has also held a number of important positions in the party ever since Sonia Gandhi took over the presidentship of the party. He is largely known for introducing the The Outstanding Parliamentarian Award, India in 1995. He was the chairman of the manifesto committee of the party during the 1999 Lok Sabha election.
He comes to the Union Cabinet with substantial legislative experience and has that unique distinction of being the Speaker of both the Maharashtra Assembly and the Lok Sabha. He attended Osmania University, Hyderabad, earning a graduation degree in Science and studied Law at the Bombay University.