Palaniappan Chidambaram, commonly known as P Chidambaram is an Indian politician and a long-time member of the Indian National Congress (INC). in the Congress led UPA government from 2004 to 2014, Chidambaram has held many important posts in the government and was the Union Minister of Finance from 2004 to 2008 and again returned as the finance minister in July 2012 succeeding Pranab Mukherjee who later became the President of India. In November 2008, he became the Home Minister in the wake of the Mumbai November 2008 attacks. Chidambaram is also a corporate lawyer. In 1996, as a Finance Minister, P Chidambaram launched an ambitious tax reform to tackle an unwieldy fiscal deficit and brought discipline in government spending and his budget for 1997-98 also earned the widespread praise as the dream budget.Born on 16th September 1945, P Chidambaram hails from Kandukathan, a place in Sivaganga District, Karnataka. His parents are Kandanur L. Ct. L. Palaniappa Chettiar and Lakshmi Achi. Chidambaram has two brothers and one sister and his father was a business person who was into trading, plantations and textiles. Chidambarams grandfather and grand uncles co-founded United India Insurance, Indian Bank, Annamalai University and Indian Overseas Bank. Chidambarams grandfather Raja Sir Annamalai Chettiar was a banker and a wealthy merchant. P Chidambaram is a highly qualified person. After completing his schooling from Madras Christian College Higher Secondary School, he obtained his pre-university degree from Chennais Loyola College. After getting his BSc degree, he did his Bachelor of Laws at the Madras Law College and then he did his MBA from Harvard Business School in the class of 1968. He then enrolled as a lawyer in the Madras High Court and became a senior advocate in 1984. He also practiced in the Supreme Court of India as well as in many High Courts and he had his offices in Delhi and Chennai. He started practicing in the Madras High Court as he was not so keen in joining his fathers business. His entrance in the Indian National Congress was at the time when he was the Union leader for MRF. He became the member of All India Congress Committee (AICC) in 1972 and from 1973 to 1976 he was the Youth Congress President in Tamil Nadu. In 1976 he became the Pradesh Congress Committees General Secretary for Tamil Nadu and held this position till 1977. He was first elected as a member of the 8thLok Sabha from Sivganga Constituency of Tamil Nadu in the 1984 General Elections and in 1985 he became the Secretary of AICC. In September 1985, he was made the Union Deputy Minister of Commerce by the then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. As a Union Deputy Minister, he was also responsible for Administrative reforms, Training Public Grievances, Personnel and Pensions. He held this position till 1986. During this tenure, his main actions include the control of tea prices in India and were criticized by the Sri Lankan government for destroying the Sri Lankan tea trade by fixing the prices of the commodity. In 1986, he was made the Union Minister of State for Public Grievances, Personnel, Pensions and Home Affairs (internal security). He held his position until the 1989 general elections and had to vacate from this seat after the defeat of the Congress party in the 1989 general elections. However, in the 1989 election Chidambaram was able to get re-elected for the second time as a member of the 9thLok Sabha and in 1990, he was the member of consultative committee constituted under the Punjab State Legislature (Delegation of Powers) Act 1987 as well as the committee member to review Lok Sabha Secretariat Rules 1955. From 1990 to 1991, he was the member of Ministry of Finance Consultative Committee and also Committee on Public Accounts. In the 10thLok Sabha election of 1991, he was elected as a member of Lok Sabha for the third time and from 1991 to 1992 and 1995 to 1996, he was the Union Minister of State for Commerce (independent charge). A radical changes in Indias export import policy was made when he was at the Ministry of Commerce. In 1996, Chidambaram quit the Congress Party and joined the breakaway faction of Tamil Nadu Congress called Tamil Maanila Congress (TMC). In the 1996 General Elections, he was re elected for the fourth time in the 11thLok Sabha election. TMC along with few other parties made a coalition government and Chidambaram was given the key cabinet portfolio of Finance. His 1997 budget is still remembered as a dream budget. However, his portfolio in the ministry of finance didnt last quite long as the coalition government fell in 1998. In 2001, Chidambaram left TMC and formed his own party, the Congress JananayakaPervai which largely focused on the Tamil Nadu politics. He then merged his party with the main stream Congress party just before the 2004 elections and the Congress led UPA alliance won the 2004 election. In the 2004 election, he was elected for the sixth time as a member of the 14thLok Sabha and was inducted into the Council of Ministers as Cabinet Minister of Finance by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. He held this post from 23rd May 2004 to 30th November 2008 and in December 2008, following the 26/11 attacks in Mumbai he was made the Union Cabinet Minister of Home Affairs. In the 2009 Lok Sabha elections, he was elected for the seventh time and he continued as the Union Cabinet Minister for Home Affairs and held this post till 2012. In august 2012, after Pranab Mukherjee, the then Finance Minister became the President of India, Chidambaram was again made the Union Cabinet Minister of Finance and he held this post until the 2014 general elections. Chidambaram faced the biggest criticism for his failure in preventing the 2G spectrum scam. In September 2014, P. Chidambaram was appointed as one of the thirteen senior spokespeople by the Indian National Congress.P. Chidambaram is married to Nalini Chidambaram and they have a son named Karti P. Chidambaram. He is a BBA graduate from Texas University, Austin and has also done a Masters in Law from Cambridge University in UK. He is also an AICC member and concentrates on Tamil Nadu state politics. P. Chidambaram is the trustee of Rajiv Gandhi Foundation and IlakkiyaChintanai, a Literary Association in Chennai. Chidambaram is fond of reading books in modern literature especially Tamil literature.