NEW DELHI: BJP leaders Biswabhusan Harichandan and Anusuiya Uikey were appointed on Tuesday governors of Andhra Pradesh and Chhattisgarh respectively. President Ram Nath Kovind cleared the files of both the gubernatorial posts.
“The President of India is pleased to make the following appointments. The above appointments will take effect from the dates they assume charge of their respective offices,” said a statement issued by the office of the President.
Harichandan, who is a BJP veteran from Odisha, replaces ESL Narasimhan, who has been the governor of AP for the last one decade. Narasimhan, who is also the Governor of Telengana, will continue to hold the charge of the state, sources said.
Uikey, currently the Vice-Chairperson of the National Commission for Scheduled Tribes, is a BJP leader from Madhya Pradesh. The post of Chhattisgarh governor was under the additional charge of MP Governor Anandiben Patel.
Harichandan has an illustrious political career of more than four decades and has held several portfolios in various governments in Odisha.
“I am happy for getting an important assignment for a big state like Andhra Pradesh. I will try my best to resolve some of the contentious issues like Polavaram project and border disputes prevailing between the two states,” Harichandan told media persons after the news of his appointment broke.
Harichandan received a phone call from PM Narendra Modi on Monday night informing him of his appointment as AP Governor.
Though Harichandan kept away from electoral politics from 2014, he has been active in party work guiding the state leadership during crisis.
He remains one of the tallest leaders of the BJP in Odisha. A practising lawyer before coming into politics, Harichandan has also authored several books.
Born in 1934, Harichandan started his political career with the Bharatiya Jana Sangh in 1971 and became its national executive member. He was the State general secretary of the party till the formation of Janata Party in 1977.
A detainee under MISA in 1975, he was elected to the Odisha Legislative Assembly from Chilika for the first time in 1977.
The Man of many shades
Harichandan has held several portfolios, including Law, Labour, Employment and Housing
Joined Bharatiya Janata Party in 1980 and remained president of the party’s state unit till 1988
Left BJP to join Janata Dal under the leadership of Biju Patnaik who led the party to victory in 1990
Left Janata Dal after its dismal performance in 1995 elections and returned to BJP in 1996
A five-time MLA, the veteran politician has authored several books