Palaniappan Chidambaram will move out of ‘Home’ and take over as the Finance Minister. This would be his third stint as Finance Minister. He first held the position in 1996 in the United Front government and later became finance minister in the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government in 2004, led by Manmohan Singh.
Power minister Sushil Kumar Shinde will replace Chidambaram as Home Minister. This reshuffle takes place in the wake of earlier Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee moving to Rashtrapati Bhavan as the President.
Earlier, he served as Finance Minister of India from May 2004 to November 2008. After the resignation of Shivraj Patil,in the wake of the Mumbai terror attacks in November, 2008, Chidambaram was made the Home Affairs Minister.
He was a union leader for MRF and worked his way up in the Congress party. Perhaps he may have some solutions for the union problems faced in the northern part of India.
Chidambaram was first elected to the Lok Sabha (Lower House) of the Indian Parliament from the Sivaganga constituency of Tamil Nadu in general elections held in 1984. He was re-elected from the same constituency in the general elections of 1989, 1991, 1996, 1998, 2004 and 2009.
He was the Tamil Nadu Youth Congress president and then the general secretary of the (TNPCC) Tamil Nadu Pradesh Congress Committee unit.
He was inducted into the Union (Indian federal) Council of Ministers in the government headed by Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi on 21 September 1985 as a Deputy Minister in the Ministry of Commerce and then in the Ministry of Personnel. His main actions during his tenure in this period was to control the price of tea. He has been criticized by the Government of Sri Lanka for destroying the Sri Lankan tea trade by fixing the prices of the commodity in India using state power. He was elevated to the rank of Minister of State in the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions in January 1986. In October of the same year, he was appointed to the Ministry of Home Affairs as Minister of State for Internal Security. He continued to hold both offices until general elections were called in 1989. The Indian National Congress government was defeated in the general elections of 1989.
On November 30, 2008, he was appointed the Union Home Minister following the resignation of Shivraj Patil who had come under intense pressure to tender his resignation following a series of terror attacks in India, including the Mumbai attacks on November 26, 2008. The public response to this move was generally favourable given Chidambaram's reputation for competence and efficiency.
He is married to Nalini Chidambaram who is a Senior Advocate and a tax lawyer practicing in the Madras High Court and the Supreme Court, primarily in litigation related to the Central Excise department of the Government of India. He has a son, Karti P. Chidambaram, who graduated with a BBA degree from the University of Texas, and a Bachelors in Law from Cambridge University. His son is also a politician in the Congress party. Chidambaram is an atheist.