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Meet Pawan Chamling — India’s longest serving CM

The 68-year-old completed 23 years, four months and 17 days in office on 29 April

Dichen Ongmu | Gangtok |

Sikkim Chief Minister Pawan Chamling scripted history on Sunday when he became the longest serving CM in the country. In doing so, he broke the earlier record set by former West Bengal CM Jyoti Basu. The 68-year-old completed 23 years, four months and 17 days in office on 29 April.

Here are a few facts about the longest serving CM in India.

Born on 22 September, 1950, to Asha Rani Chamling and Aash Bahadur in Yangang in South Sikkim,  Pawan Chamling  dropped out of school after matriculation.

Chamling, who has lived the life of a farmer, a revolutionary poet, a social worker and a politician, is largely self-educated.

On December 12, 1994, as founding president of the Sikkim Democratic Front, he was sworn in as the state’s Chief Minister.

READ | Sikkim Chief Minister Pawan Chamling pips Jyoti Basu to become India’s longest serving CM

In 1999, Chamling was re-elected to office for the second time.  Between 2004 and 2014, he got people’s mandate for the third, fourth and fifth terms.

As a poet, Chamling wrote poems of idealism and human suffering and tried to battle the odds to ensure justice to the poor and downtrodden before he came into active politics.

Before he started his political career, he also worked as a first class contractor.

In 1973, at the age of 22, Chamling started actively participating in politics, and this heralded a new era of democracy in Sikkim with its merger with the Indian Union in 1975. That year, he became the Block President of the Youth Congress and was elected secretary of the Prajantantra Congress in 1978.

In 1983, he was elected president of the Yangang Gram Panchayat Unit unopposed.

Chamling became a primary member of the Sikkim Sangram Parishad led by the former Chief Minister Nar Bahadur Bhandari in 1985. The same year, he became a member of the Sikkim Legislative Assembly and was appointed
Chairman of the Sikkim Distilleries Ltd.

On 4 March, 1993, he formed the Sikkim Democratic Front.

Chamling has been conferred with many national and International honours, awards, recognition and prizes.