Born in a poor tribal family on 22 March 1961 at ‘Kendudihi’, a village in Odisha’s Sundargarh district, Jual Oram created history when he became the first Union Tribal Affairs Minister of India.
One of a brood of two brothers and three sisters, he and his family have lived a life of penury and that was enough reason for him to think how to uplift the poor and he decided to join politics.
Oram, a diploma holder in electrical engineering, worked for five years with BHEL, before he decided to quit and join politics.
A man who worked in the capacity of Assistant Foreman, Power Group Construction Division of the company for six years began his political career in 1990.
He contested the assembly election from Bonai constituency that year and won with a comfortable margin. Since then, the graph of his popularity never gone down.
He has held several important posts that include being member of the Orissa Legislative Assembly and several high-profile committees of the Union Government and in Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
He was elected to the 12th Lok Sabha in 1998 and began his assignment as Union Minister for Tribal Affairs on the 13th October, 1999 .
Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee gave him this assignment creating a new ministry, for the first time in the history of Independent India.
He wrested back his Sundergarh constituency in 2014 parliamentary election, which he lost in 2009 with a thin margin. He was the sole BJP MP to save party face in the State.
Oram who is a firebrand leader once again got a cabinet berth in the Union Government. Prime Minister Narendra Modi gave him the charge of tribal affairs ministry once again, a reaffirmation of the confidence of the party on him.
Oram, who is a two-time legislator and four-time Lok Sabha member, has always been championing the cause of tribal upliftment and welfare of the poorer sections of the society and for him and his people it was a dream come true.
He has already taken several initiatives for the uplift of the downtrodden, weaker section of the people particularly tribal visiting extensively across the country.