Bhupesh Baghel
Bhupesh Baghel, June 2018.jpg
3rd Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh
Assumed office
17 December 2018
GovernorAnandiben Patel
Anusuiya Uikey
Preceded byRaman Singh
Assumed office
17 December 2018
Ministry and Departments
  • Finance.
  • Mining.
  • General Administration.
  • Energy.
  • Public Relations.
  • Electronics and Information technology.
  • Other departments not allocated to any Minister.
Preceded byRaman Singh
Member of the Chhattisgarh Legislative Assembly
Assumed office
16 December 2013
Preceded byVijay Baghel
ConstituencyPatan
Majority27,477 (2018)
In office
2003–2008
Preceded byConstituency Established
Succeeded byVijay Baghel
ConstituencyPatan
Minister of Transportation, Government of Madhya Pradesh
In office
1999–2003
Chief MinisterDigvijaya Singh
Personal details
Born (1961-08-23) 23 August 1961 (age 61)
Durg, Chhattisgarh, India
Political partyIndian National Congress
SpouseMukteshwari Baghel
Children4
Residence(s)B-3, C.M. House, Civil Lines, Raipur, Chhattisgarh, India
Alma materPandit Ravishankar Shukla University, Raipur (M.A)

Bhupesh Baghel (born 23 August 1961) is an Indian politician serving as the third and current Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh.[1] He was president of Chhattisgarh Pradesh Congress.[2][3] He has been member of legislative assembly five times from Patan. He had been cabinet minister in undivided Madhya Pradesh in Digvijaya Singh government in late nineties.[4][1] He was first Minister for Revenue, Public Health Engineering and Relief Work of Chhattisgarh.[4][1]

Background

Bhupesh Baghel was born on 23 August 1961 in Durg district.[1][4] He is the son of Nand Kumar Baghel and Bindeshwari Baghel. His family's primary occupation is agriculture.[5]

Personal life

He is married to Mukteshwari Baghel. They have one son and three daughters.[1] Baghel belongs to Other Backward Class Kurmi community and he had been an OBC face of the Congress for long in the state of Chhattisgarh.[6][7]

Political career

Beginning and rise

Bhupesh Baghel started his political career from Indian Youth Congress and became member of All India Congress Committee, he was also the General Secretary, and Program Coordinator of Pradesh Congress Committee. He was elected to Madhya Pradesh Legislative Assembly in 1993 for the first time from Patan, and was later elected five times from same seat.[4]

Baghel was appointed as Minister of State, Chief Minister related, Public Grievances Redressal (Independent Charge), M.P. Governance in Digvijay Singh’s cabinet in December 1998 and became Minister of Transport in December 1999.[4]

After the state of Chhattisgarh was formed in November 2000, he became member of Chhattisgarh Legislative Assembly, and appointed as Minister, Revenue Rehabilitation, Relief Work, Public Health Mechanics under CG Governance. He again became MLA in 2003 state election from same seat. He lost the Patan assembly seat in 2008 elections. He also lost Parliamentary elections in 2009 from Raipur .[8]

He again won Patan Vidhan Sabha seat in 2013 election, and became Member of Working Committee, Chhattisgarh Assembly. In 2014-15, he became Member of Public Accounts Committee, CG Government.

President of Chhattisgarh Congress

He was President of state unit of Indian National Congress from October 2014 to June 2019.[9][10] After the state's top Congress leaders like Mahendra Karma, Vidya Charan Shukla, Nand Kumar Patel and 28 others were killed in the 2013 Naxal attack in Darbha valley,[11] Baghel played a very important role in reviving the party in the state.[10] He managed to sideline ex-Chief Minister Ajit Jogi and his son Amit Jogi in state congress after Antagarh Assembly by-election audio tape row.[12][13]

Under his presidency Chhattisgarh Congress won the 2018 Chhattisgarh Legislative Assembly election by a thumping majority.[14]

Positions held

Year Position[15]
1990-94
  • President, District Youth Congress Committee
1994–95
  • Vice President, M.P. Youth Congress Committee (MP)
1993-2001
  • Member: M.P. Assembly Estimates Committee
  • Member: MP Consultative Committee of the Aviation Department of Legislative Assembly
  • Member: M.P. Food and Civil Supplies Corporation
  • Director: M.P. Housing Board
  • Member: M.P. Backward Classes Organization
  • Member: M.P. Sainik Board
1993-2000
  • Member: MP Legislative Assembly
2000-2008 and 2013-till date
  • Member: Chhattisgarh Legislative Assembly
1993-2008
  • Member: M.P. And CG Assembly Constituency Patan, District-Durg (MP)
2003-2008
  • Deputy Leader, Congress Legislative Party, Chhattisgarh
December 2013 - June 2019
  • President, Chhattisgarh Pradesh Congress Committee
1996–present
  • Guardian, Chhattisgarh Manwa Kurmi Samaj
2018–present
  • Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh

Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh

Baghel became MLA from Patan assembly seat again and became the Chief Minister of the state defeating BJP’s Raman Singh, after leading the opposition in Chhattisgarh State Assembly for 15 years.[16][17] He took oath as chief minister on 17 December 2018. He was replaced by Kondagaon MLA Mohan Markam as PCC President in June 2019.[18][19]

Baghel fulfilled two major poll promises farm loan waiver and raising paddy support price by 50% in relatively quicker way, the order letter was released dramatically, within hours of oath taking ceremony, though actual money transfer to farmers took days, weeks and months in some cases.[20][21][22] Tendu patta collection prices were increased. Government took a major step away from shiksha-karmi (temporary teacher) policy and vacancy for posts of 15,000 permanent teachers was announced.[21]

Welfare schemes

Narva, Garva, Ghurva, Bari

Bhupesh Baghel is the architect of this innovative scheme. The objective of this scheme is to revive the agricultural economy by striking a balance between modernity and traditions. The scheme has been launched to ensure water conservation, livestock protection and development, use of organic compost through household waste and cultivation of fruits and vegetables in backyards for self consumption and earning additional income.[23]

Rural Development, Water Resources Development Department, Forest Department is being taken for Narva (rivulets and streams) related work. As of February, about 30,000 Narva have been identified and the development of about 5,000 Narva has already been completed.[24] As of September 2022, under Garva (livestock) project, a total of 10,624 villages in the state have received approval for the construction of gauthan, of which 8,408 are already operational and 1758 are in the planning stages.[25] Under Ghurva (compost) project, until this year, about 20 lakh quintal vermi compost has been produced by the individuals of women self-help groups in Gothans.[26] An amount of Rs 166.84 crore has been paid as dividend to Gauthan committees and women self-help groups.[27] At the same time, vegetable seeds and plants are being distributed under the nutrition scheme under Bari Yojana.[28]

Rajiv Gandhi Kisan Nyay Yojana

Beneficiary farmers of Rajiv Gandhi Kisan Nyay Yojana
Beneficiary farmers of Rajiv Gandhi Kisan Nyay Yojana

In the state budget presented by the Chhattisgarh government, a provision of Rs 5700 crore was made for the welfare of farmers through which Rajiv Gandhi Kisan Nyay Yojana was launched on 21 May, the martyrdom day of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi.[29]

In Chhattisgarh, the total cultivable land area is 46.77 lakh hectare.[30] 70% population of the state is engaged in agriculture and around 37.46 Lakh are farm families.[31] The objective of this scheme is to encourage crop production and increase agricultural acreage. An amount of Rs 5750 crores is transferred to the accounts of farmers in four installments under the scheme in a year. Chhattisgarh is the only state that has been procuring paddy from farmers at Rs 2,500 per quintal, which is higher than what the Centre has set. More than 23.99 lakh farmers of the state are benefiting from this scheme.[32] Paddy, maize and sugarcane (Rabi) crops were included in the initial year of the plan. In the year 2020-21, it has been decided to include pulses and oilseed crops as well. The government of Chhattisgarh has also decided to include the landless agricultural laborers of the state in the second phase of the Rajiv Gandhi Kisan Nyay Yojana.

On 17 October 2022, Farmers received a total of Rs.1,745 crores to prepare for the upcoming Rabi season under this scheme. Amount as input subsidy transferred directly into the bank accounts of 23.99 lakh farmers in the state.[33] The state government has given farmers Rs.16,416.10 crores since its commencement.[34] Farmers who plant trees in the fields will be given an input subsidy of Rs.10 thousand per year for the next three years. Chief Minister said that other than waiving off the agricultural loans of farmers, State Government has distributed additional incentives worth Rs 11 thousand crore in last two years.[35]

Godhan Nyay Yojana

Purchase of cow dung in Manora block of Jashpur district of Chhattisgarh
Purchase of cow dung in Manora block of Jashpur district of Chhattisgarh

On 21 July 2020, the Baghel led Chhattisgarh government launched the Godhan Nyay Yojana to promote organic farming, create new employment opportunities at the rural and urban levels, promote cow rearing and cow protection, as well as to benefit cattle farmers financially. As per the scheme, the government will procure cow dung at 2 per kilogram from farmers and cattle rearers. After the procurement, the cow dung will be converted to vermicompost and other products by members of the Women Self-Help Group, which will be sold to farmers as organic manure for 8 per kilogram, thus discouraging use of chemical fertilisers.[36]

As per a March 2021 report, 88 crore have been paid to the livestock owners under Godhan Nyay Yojana. Under the scheme, 1,62,497 cattle rearers of the state are benefiting, which includes 70,299 landless villagers and 44.55 percent of the beneficiaries of the Godhan Nyay Yojana are women.[37]

Padhai Tuhar Dwar

Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel reached the Mohalla class under 'Padhai Tuhar Dwar' in Durg district.
Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel reached the Mohalla class under 'Padhai Tuhar Dwar' in Durg district.

The objective of this scheme is to cover the incomplete syllabus of various classes in lockdown during the COVID-19 pandemic. Online classes are conducted to complete the syllabus in rural areas. Under Padhai Tuhar Dwar, there is a provision for 2 lakh educators to teach 22 lakh children. Despite the closure of the school in the lockdown, the children were able to study. All study materials are available online through the site http://cgschool.in/Default.aspx. Being an e-class, every courses can be watched again and again. Under this, there is also facility of offline learning through loudspeaker.[38]

Amidst lockdown and unlock phases, the primary and middle school children in the government schools are getting their education via Mohalla Classes and the online portal ‘Padhai Tuhar Dwar’. It's heartening to see the committed teachers and community coming forward to support Mohalla classes across the state.[39] Extensive innovative activities are happening in such classes following the norms specified as Covid-19 guidelines. Over 80% of students are getting their education from attending the Mohalla and online classes.

Every morning from 8-9:30 a.m. and every evening from 5-6:30 p.m., the residents of villages in the Bastar district of Chhattisgarh are audience to a special programme on the Amcho Bastar radio channel. This community radio channel was launched in June 2020 under the larger initiative of Padhai Tuhar Dwar of the Chhattisgarh state government.[40]

Free treatment of girls inside mobile medical unit.
Free treatment of girls inside mobile medical unit.

Mahtari Dular Yojana

Chhattisgarh Mahatari Dular Yojana was launched in May 2021 by the state government of Chhattisgarh to help provide funds for education of children orphaned by COVID-19.[41]

Encouragement towards Sports

Bhupesh Baghel the Chief Minister of India’s state Chhattisgarh, is driving the state towards a sports hub. Baghel who has taken the charges as the Chief Minister has already successfully backed and hosted Road Safety World Series at the state capital Raipur.[42]

Chhattisgarh chief minister Bhupesh Baghel also inaugurated the state’s own Olympics, called 'Chhattisgarhiya Olympics', claiming to revive the age-old-tradition of traditional games namely langdi, bhaura, bati (kancha), and pitthul. “These games are not only entertaining but also beneficial for maintaining good physical and mental health. In rural areas, children, elderly, and youth—all will engage in these games for entertainment and to keep themselves fit”, Baghel commented.[43]

Upliftment of tribals

The new government returned the land acquired for the steel plant of farmers of Lohandiguda in Bastar district.
The new government returned the land acquired for the steel plant of farmers of Lohandiguda in Bastar district.

Repatriation of tribal land

Under an MoU signed between the then govt and Tata Steel in 2005, agricultural land was acquired from the local tribals 10 villages around Lohandiguda in Bastar region. Despite protests from the villagers, the govt went ahead with the acquisition to build a 5.5 million tonne per annum capacity mega integrated steel plant. Tata Steel decided to quit the project in 2016. Immediately after coming to power, Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel took a decision to return 4400 acres of the land to 1707 tribal families. The land was returned to the immediate owners or their legal heirs as per the provisions of the 'Right to Fair Compensation and Transparency in Land Acquisition, Rehabilitation and Resettlement Act, 2013 under the Section 101. Section 101 stipulates that if any land acquired remains underutilized for a period of 5 years from the date of taking over the possession the same shall be returned to the original owners of their legal heirs.[44]

Health Policy

Mukhymantri Haat Bazar Clinic

Health checkup at one of Haat Bazaar Clinics in Dantewada district of Chhattisgarh
Health checkup at one of Haat Bazaar Clinics in Dantewada district of Chhattisgarh

The state of Chhattisgarh has 44% forest cover. Significantly large population lives in forests and remote areas. Due to neglect and difficult terrain, the population living in such areas doesn't have access to quality health care. On 2 October 2019, Baghel launched the Mukhyamantri Haat Bazaar Clinic Yojana, an innovative health care scheme is bringing health cared facilities to the doorsteps of these people. Under this scheme, mobile healthcare vans are deputed at weekly haat bazaars (local markets) which are frequented by forest dwellers selling minor forest produce. Manned by specialist doctors and other qualified staff with necessary equipments, these mobile clinics are providing quality and affordable healthcare checkup and medicine to people.[45]

In the past four years, 1.28 lakh Haat-bazaar clinics have provided healthcare services to more than 62,47,000 individuals.[46] The 429 medical mobile vans used to operate the 1798 haat-bazaar clinic programme. Also, the World Health Organization (WHO) has prepared a documentary film on the Haat Bazaar Clinic scheme in Chhattisgarh.[47]

Malaria Mukt Bastar

Malaria is a major public health concerns in India and major contributor to the malaria burden in South East Asia. Several factors contribute to the prevalence and incidences[spelling?] including socio-economic factors, geographical region, drug resistance. Bastar region of the state of Chhattisgarh has the highest Annual Parasite Incidence (API) (malaria) in India. Timely diagnosis due to limited infrastructure compounds the problem.

Launching the “Malaria Mukt Bastar” on 26 January 2020, the Chief Minister, Bhupesh Baghel pledged to make Bastar Malaria free in the coming days. In the first phase of the campaign, 14 lakh people were tested in Bastar, out of which 64,646 (4.60 percent) were found malaria infected. The second phase of the campaign started on 6 June and ended 31 July in which more than 23 lakh people have been examined. The process of medication of the victims has started.[48] In March 2021, for the first time in the history of Chhattisgarh, the annual malaria parasite rate recorded lowest - API rate reached 1.17, the lowest since the formation of the state.[49]

Mukhyamantri Suposhan Abhiyan

Beneficiary women and children being served midday meal under Mukhyamantri Suposhan Abiyan.
Beneficiary women and children being served midday meal under Mukhyamantri Suposhan Abiyan.

National Health Family Survey (NHFS)- 4 (2015–16), Chhattisgarh is one of the top states in India with high level of malnutrition and anemia among children and women. The scheme launched on 2 October 2019 on the occasion of Mahatma Gandhi’s 150 birth anniversary aims to turn Chhattisgarh into malnutrition and anemia free state in the next three years. As per a March 2020, around 68 thousand children were cured of malnutrition in one year under this campaign.[50]

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Political offices Preceded byDr. Raman Singh Chief Minister of Chhattisgarh 17 December 2018 - Present Incumbent