Shri Vilasrao Dagadojirao Deshmukh is a member of parliament of India representing Maharashtra in Rajya Sabha. Before taking this charge, he was Minister of Rural Development and Minister of Panchayati Raj, Heavy Industries and Public Enterprises, Government of India. He was also a two-time Chief Minister of Maharashtra, from 1999 to 2003 and from 2004 to 2008. He is a member of the Indian National Congress and originally belongs to Latur district in the Marathwada region of the state of Maharashtra.
Shri Deshmukh was born on May 26, 1945 in Babhalgaon in the Latur district. He graduated with a degree in Science (B.Sc.) and Arts (B.A.) from M.E.S Abasaheb Garware College, (Pune University) and went on to study law (L.L.B.) from the ILS Law College (Pune University). He started social activities in his early youth with particular interest in drought relief work. He was elected as the Director of the Osmanabad district Central Cooperative Bank and also of the Maharashtra State Cooperative Bank in 1979.
Shri Deshmukh entered active politics and became member of the Babhalgaon Village Panchayat from 1974 to 1979 and its Sarpanch (village chief) from 1974 to 1976. He was a member of Osmanabad Zilla Parishad and Deputy Chairman of Latur Taluka Panchayat Samiti (Latur District Panchayat Committee) from 1974 to 1980. As a President of Osmanabad District Youth Congress from 1975 to 1978, he worked for the implementation of Five Point Programme of the Youth Congress. He organised the youth in Osmanabad district and became President of District wing of the Indian National Congress.
He was Member of the Maharashtra Legislative Assembly from 1980 to 1995 winning 1980, 1985 and 1990 elections.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vilasrao_Deshmukh - cite_note-eci-1978-2004-4
During this period, as the Minister of State and the Cabinet Minister, Deshmukh handled departments such as Home, General Administration, Cooperation, Public Works, Transport, Legislative Affairs, Tourism, Agriculture, Animal Husbandry, Dairy Development Fisheries, Industry, Rural Development, Education, Technical Education, Sports and Youth Welfare.He has been a minister in various governments in Maharashtra from 1982 to 1995 holding portfolios of revenue, cooperation, agriculture, home, industries and education.
Shri Deshmukh had an opportunity to visit Japan, Thailand, Philippines, Taiwan and Hong Kong in 1980, to study Cooperative Movement in Amsterdam, Netherland and Agricultural Development. He also visited West Germany, France, England, United States and Japan in 1981. As the Chief Minister of Maharashtra, he led an official delegation in May 2000, to U.S.A. and UK and visited New York, Los Angeles, San Jose, Washington and London to interact with the investors to bring investment to Maharashtra.
His interests include reading, classical music, volleyball and table tennis.