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Shri. K.C. Venugopal is a politician from the state of Kerala. He is a Member of Parliament representing Alappuzha Lokh Sabha Constituency. He is a Minister in the central government. He has been given the charge of the Ministry of Civil Aviation. He came to the Indian National Congress by actively participating in student politics through its students' wing Kerala Students Union (KSU). Later he became the active member of the Indian Youth League, the youth wing of Indian National Congress. Subsequently, he was elected to Kerala Legislative Assembly, representing the Alappuzha Assembly Constituency, and became a Minister in Oommen Chandy Ministry from 2004 to 2006. As a State Minister, he was given the charge to look after the administration of Dewaswom Board. During his college days, he was a good volleyball player. He represented the Payyanur College and the Calicut University in various championships across the country.
Early Life and Education
Shri. K.C. Venugopal was born on February 4, 1963 to a Kannur-based Malayali couple. His father's name was Kunjukrishnan Nambi and mother's name was Janaki Amma. He had his formal education from a government school near his place of birth. After successfully completing the formal education, he was enrolled in a reputed government school for his higher secondary education near his home. He studied up to the tenth standard at this school. When he was studying at this school, he started participating in the student politics. He was moved by the talks given by the student leaders on topics related to the anti-student policies of incumbent government at that point in time. From that point onwards, he became a member of KSU and started participating in various student agitations against the anti-student policies of the government of that time. Despite being busy with his political activity, he found enough time to learn the lessons he was supposed to get acquainted with. As a result of this, he successfully attended the Secondary School Leaving Certificate (SSLC) examinations and came out with decent marks and grades.
Shri. K.C. Venugopal later joined a junior college in Payyanur and continued his studies. Here, devoted more time to his studies. Due to his single-point devotion, he could pass the pre-degree examinations with flying colors. After clearing the pre-degree hurdle, he joined a reputed government college at Payyanur. At the degree level, he took Mathematics as his area of specialization. He started building his real political career from this college. Slowly, he learned the art of organizing various events by watching his seniors in the students' wing of INC. He also had the innate ability to influence the audience through his thoughts. Thus, he became the crowd puller in various student agitations at this juncture in his life. During his whole-hearted participation in the activity for the betterment of students in the college, he became a popular figure in the college. Hence, he was elected as the President of Payyanur College unit of KSU. This formed the basis for his political career in the political landscape of the state of Kerala. However, he continued his studies also well. On account of this, he got good marks in his degree examinations. This emboldened him to take up the postgraduate course in Mathematics. For this, he joined a reputed college in his hometown and continued his studies. There also he continued his dual role, a role of an avid student seeking knowledge and the other of a budding political leader. Owing to this, he furthered his base as a budding leader and a good student. With the help of his mentors at the Mathematics department, he compensated for the missing classes and studied well to prepare for the postgraduate examinations. On account of good preparation, he was able to write his postgraduate examination well and do well in his final year project. After the examination was over, he concentrated on the project that was pending. With more preparations, he did well in submitting the thesis describing his project ahead of the submission date. This enabled him to get good marks for both the project work and the postgraduate degree examinations. At the later stage in his life, he got married to Asha Venugopal. The couple is blessed with two children, one boy and one girl. The children's names are Gokul and Parvathy.
With his student welfare activities at the Payyanur College, K.C. Venugopal did the ground work to launch himself as a young political leader. During those days, he was getting ideologically more attached to the views of the Congress Leader K. Karunakaran. So, he decided to work with and for him. His loyalty with the leader helped him to bargain for his pound of flesh in the hierarchy of things in the grand old party. It was under his mentor's request did he gravitated his area of work towards Alappuzha, far away from his hometown of Kannur. Under the patronage of his mentor K. Karunakaran, he started working for the people of Alappuzha. For this purpose, he built his house at Alappuzha and shifted his family there. This move helped him to devote more time for the people of his new area of activity. He started working for the people there and with the help of his mentor brought more developmental works there. Due to his humble efforts, he became more popular amongst the people there.
Though K.C. Venugopal moved away from his hometown, he continued to keep in touch with the people there. Through his political clout, he was able to bring more developmental works there also. Due to this move, his popularity grew amongst the people of Alappuzha and Kannur. Taking cognizance of the new developments, the think tank of the state unit of the Congress party decided to appoint him as the State President of the Youth Congress (1992 – 2000). Earlier, during his college days, he was made the State President of Kerala Students Union (1987 – 1992), the students' wing of Indian National Congress. From Youth Congress, he was elevated to the State Unit of the Congress party after evaluating his work by his mentor when the latter was at the helm of affairs in the state unit of the party. Later, he was nominated to contest the general election for the State Assembly from Alappuzha in the year 1996. As the ground work was already laid, the election was a cake walk for him. Thus, he became the Member of State Legislative Assembly for the first time in that year. As the stature grew, he decided to contest in the subsequent elections as well. In the years that followed, he was again elected to the Kerala Legislative Assembly twice (2001 and 2006). Later, he contested the general election for the Parliament from his favorite constituency of Alappuzha in the year 2009. Since he had the blessings of the Luck Goddess, he won that election with wide margins against the nearest candidate from the Communist Party of India (Marxist).
Works as a State Minister
Shri. K.C. Venugopal became the Minister in the State Cabinet of the government headed by Shri. Oommen Chandy in the year 2004. He was given the charge of looking after Dewaswom and Tourism departments. He remained as the Minister with the same portfolios for a period of three years from 2004 to 2006. During his tenure as the Minister of Tourism, he took up various Tourism-related developmental works in Alappuzha and Kannur. He took the administrative steps to renovate the Gandhi Park at Payyanur and elevated its stature to that of one of the important tourism hotspots of the state. He also took personal interest in approving and supervising the development of beaches in both the districts. He also took steps to administratively approve the eco-tourism project at Paithalmala in Kannur. As a Dewaswom Minister, he took some steps to curb the rampant practice of nepotism and the back-door entry of the politicians in the department. He also tried his hand to stop the appointments of the people suggested by politicians as priests at temples that were under the administrative control of the department. Due to his iron-hand attitude, the trend of officials appointing people as priests by taking bribe was curtailed to some extent.
Work as a Member of Parliament
In the year 2009, Shri. K.C. Venugopal was elected as the Member of Parliament from the Lokh Sabha Constituency of Alappuzha from the state of Kerala. Subsequently, he was made the Minister of State in charge of Civil Aviation. During his tenure as the Civil Aviation Minister, he was instrumental in bringing to the public scrutiny the probable ticket scam. While he was traveling to Kochi from Delhi, he saw some 23 seats vacant in the Air India flight commuting in the Delhi – Cochin travel corridor. He decided to enquire into the reason of finding the 23 vacant seats on board. In the same aircraft, he was denied a ticket in the business class. For this, the Air India Officials cited the non-availability of seats as the reason. After the inquiry by a senior official, it was found that it was part of a scam to artificially increase the price of the ticket. In the aftermath of the enquiry, two officers from the customer service of the national airlines were suspended from service. He has also looked after the portfolio of Power as a Minister of State in the central government.
Shri. K.C. Venugopal is an upcoming politician from the state of Kerala. He is a seasoned politician who plunged into the state politics when he was a school-going student. Through his sincere activities, he slowly climbed through the rank and file of the students' wing of the Indian National Congress to become its State President. In the capacity of the State President of Kerala Students Union, he provided a meticulous service for the party. Taking the cognizance of his good work, he was appointed as the State President of Indian Youth League, the youth wing of the Congress party. Under the patronage of his mentor Sri. K. Karunakaran, he was elevated to the level of a member in the Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee. Later, he successfully contested from Alappuzha Assembly constituency three times and became a state Minister once. Later, he became the Member of Parliament, representing Alappuzha Lokh Sabha constituency. As a union minister, he was single-handedly responsible for busting the ticket scam in Air India.