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Monday, June 24, 2013
Minister of textiles Kavuri Sambasiva Rao
Businessman-turned-politician Kavuri Sambasiva Rao, who had almost resigned his Lok Sabha seat last October upset over being ignored in the previous Cabinet reshuffle, makes an entry into the Union Council of Ministers after almost three decades of Parliamentary run.
69-year-old Rao, a strong advocate of united Andhra, is opposed to separate Telangana over which the state has been seeing a lot of tensions.
In October last, the five-time MP was almost sure that the Congress leadership will induct him in the Cabinet when Prime Minister Manmohan Singh went for a reshuffle of his council of ministers. Rao now represents Eluru seat.
But the leadership's decision to exclude him from the ministry upset Rao who then made his displeasure public and announced his decision to quit from Lok Sabha. However, the leadership managed to calm him down.
A loyal Congressman, Rao is presently a member of the crucial Congress Coordination Committee in Andhra Pradesh, set up in 2010 to ensure better coordination between the party and the state government headed by N Kiran Kumar Reddy.
A maverick, he sided with veteran Congress leaders N D Tiwari and Arjun Singh who floated Congress (Tiwari) in 1995 following differences with the then Prime Minister and AICC president PV Narasimha Rao.
Born on October 2, 1943 in Dosapadu in Krishna district of Andhra Pradesh, Rao got his engineering degree from Regional Engineering College in Warangal.
Rao, who has business interests in real estate and construction, was first elected as an MP in 1984 and was re-elected in 1989, 1998, 2004 and 2009. He had represented Machilipatnam seat earlier.
The website of his company Progressive Constructions describes Rao as an "accomplished and successful business person" who "sought a higher calling beyond the confines of a commercial office".
"He aspires to continue in public office and take up higher responsibilities to serve the nation for years to come....While Progressive has lost the active involvement of a dynamic entrepreneur like Rao, we derive immense satisfaction from his nation building activities," it says.
His profile in the Lok Sabha website says that he "set up institutes on science and technology, research and management etc and engaged in construction of major irrigation and power projects and multi-storied urban housing complexes etc".
Rao, who describes himself as an agriculturist, engineer, industrialist and political and social worker, was joint secretary of AICC in 1985 and general secretary of Andhra Pradesh Congress Committee in 1989-94 period and vice president in 1998.
He has served on a number of parliamentary committees in his long innings as a Lok Sabha member.
Rao, who has keen interest in reading and social service, served in a number of social, educational, cultural organisations and employee associations.
He was a member of the Board of School of Planning and Architecture, New Delhi, Court of Hyderabad University, Court of Jawaharlal Nehru University among several others.
Rao travelled to about 40 countries as a member of parliament. He has a son and three daughters.