Amit Shah is an Indian politician and the current Home Minister of India. He is also the President of the Bharatiya Janata Party. A prominent BJP leader belonging to Gujarat, Shah won Gandhinagar Lok Sabha seat with a massive margin in Lok Sabha election 2019. Earlier, He was a member of the Upper House.
Shah is a close associate of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and has played a key role in the party's emergence as a dominant force in the 2014 elections. Shah became the new face of BJP after being able to sweep the entire state of Uttar Pradesh by winning 73 out of 80 seats in the 2014 election and getting the BJP back to power in Lok Sabha Elections 2019.
Shah was born on October 22, 1964, in Mumbai. He completed his schooling in Mehsana and pursued his graduation in biochemistry from CU Shah Science College in Ahmedabad. His father, Anil Chandra Shah, ran a business of PVC pipes. While he has been with the RSS since the age of 14, Shah handled his father's business for some time, briefly worked as a stock-broker and also with co-operative banks in Ahmedabad. Shah is married to Sonal Shah and the couple has a son.
He attended the local shakhas (branches) of RSS and became its volunteer in his college days. He met Modi for the first time in 1982 when the latter was an RSS pracharak (promoter) and was working as the in-charge of the youth activities in Ahmedabad. Shah became the Secretary of RSS students' body Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP) in 1982 and then joined BJP in 1986.
In 1987, he became an activist with BJP's youth wing Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM) and then rose to hold various positions in the party such as State Secretary, Vice President and General Secretary. In the 1991 general elections, Lal Krishna Advani was contesting for the 1991 general elections from Gandhinagar constituency in Gujarat and Shah was given the responsibility of the campaign. In 1995, when Keshubhai Patel led-BJP formed the government in Gujarat, Shah and Modi were given the responsibility to check the Congress' influence in the state and convince people to join BJP.
The duo was able to convince a large number of people to join BJP. They created a network of 8,000 influential rural leaders who had lost their election to Pradhan post in various villages. In the early 90s, Modi had become the General Secretary in the party's state unit and he used his influence in getting bigger roles for Shah. He helped Shah in becoming the chairman of Gujarat State Financial Corporation, a public sector financing institution that finances small and medium enterprises.
Shah became an MLA in February 1997 by-election in Sarkhej. He retained his seat in the 1998 assembly election. In 1999, Shah became the President of Ahmedabad District Co-operative Bank, the biggest co-operative bank in India. At that time, the bank had losses of Rs 36 crore however, Shah turned the fortune of the bank within a year and the next year the bank registered a profit of Rs 27 Crore and by 2014, the profit rose to Rs 250 Crore. Shah also served as the President of State Chess Association.
After BJP removed Keshubhai Patel and made Narendra Modi as the Chief Minister of Gujarat in 2001, Shah also gained political prominence in the state. He registered a huge victory in the 2002 Gujarat Legislative Assembly elections winning by over a margin of 1,60,000 votes in Sarkhej. After winning the 2002 elections, Shah became the youngest minister in the Modi government and was given multiple portfolios. At one point of time, he held 12 portfolios; Home, Law and Justice, Prison, Border Security, Civil Defence, Excise, Transport, Prohibition, Home Guards, Gram Rakshak Dal, Police Housing, and Legislative and Parliamentary Affairs.
Shah was in national limelight when, in 2014 Lok Sabha elections, under his leadership, the BJP did exceptionally well in Uttar Pradesh. The same year, he was unanimously appointed as the BJP president replacing Rajnath Singh. He was re-elected to the post in 2016.