New Delhi: Gossipping with family members
to playing veena or flying aeroplanes -- the eight fresh faces
in the Manmohan Singh Cabinet have their own way of spending
leisure time in style.
From the elderly V Kishore Chandra Deo to the baby
among the new faces Milind Deora, all of them are at least
graduates with Minister of State Charan Das Mahant being the
most educated with his profile reading "MSc, MA, LLB, PhD".
Mahant, the Korba (Chhattisgarh) MP, lists gossiping
with family, music, debates, and travelling as his favourite
past time while Jayanthi Natarajan likes to play veena besides
getting active in environment protection activities.
Incidentally, Natarajan has been assigned to work in
Environment Ministry. She also loves reading books on
philosophy, poetry and humour and enjoying amateur dramatics.
Almost all the new ministers have a taste for music
and in young Deora, the Parliamentarians can get a taste of
western music as he plays jazz guitar and whose tastes range
from Indian classical to the blues. Deora also loves to read
But it appears nobody could match Trinamool Congress`
Sudip Bandhopadhyay as he is the only lawmaker in the current
bunch to perform in the Central Hall of Parliament. He sang
Rabindra Sangeet on the occasion of Rabindranath Tagore`s
birth anniversary in 1998.
If 64-year-old Deo, a post graduate in political
science whose interests range from cooking to astrology to
music, is the only author among the `chosen eight`, Jitendra
Singh (40), a trap shooter of repute, is the only one who had
won a national medal in sports.
Deo loves swimming, rifle-shooting, billiards, chess,
tennis and cricket while Singh, a B.Com graduate, has interests
in motor mechanics, flying aeroplanes, photography and
trekking in the Himalayas.
Incidentally, it took almost 31 years for Deo to once
again get into Union Council of Ministers, his first stint
being in 1979.
59-year-old Bandhopadhyay says he is concerned about
development and renovation of river Ganga in Kolkata and that
he wants give extra time to make the holy river free of
pollution. He spends his leisure time reading national and
international magazines and with pets.
Mahant has also interest in Kabir`s poetry and had
organised several poetry sessions besides holding talks and
exhibitions on painting and art. He had drafted action plan
for the upliftment of tribals and encouraged folk-art, drama
Besides music, Deora (35) also likes swimming and
Paban Singh Ghatowar (61) organised and participated
in educational, cultural and social welfare activities of
tribes and communities and is engaged in tea plantation and
A law graduate, Rajiv Shukla (52) lists journalism as