Krishan Kant, (born Feb. 28, 1927, Kot Mohammad Khan, Punjab, India—died July 27, 2002, New Delhi, India), Indian politician who devoted his entire life to Indian freedom, social welfare, and civil liberties and rose to become vice president in 1997. Krishan Kant, who came from a family of devout followers of Mohandas Gandhi, plunged into active politics while still a student and was imprisoned for his involvement in the anti-British Quit India movement of 1942. He rose in the Congress Party, identifying himself with the socialist group, and was elected to the Rajya Sabha (upper house) in 1966. In 1975 Kant was expelled from the Congress Party for his opposition to the state of emergency declared by then prime minister Indira Gandhi. He joined the Janata Party and in 1977 was elected to the Lok Sabha (lower house). He was appointed governor of Andhra Pradesh in 1990. In early 2002 Kant, whose simplicity and dedication to social work had won him widespread respect, was touted as a possible candidate for president, but he was passed over in favour of A.P.J. Abdul Kalam.
Shri Krishan Kant took active part in ‘Quit India’ Movement of 1942, while he was a student at Lahore and was arrested with the other members of the family. He was a Member of the Rajya Sabha from 1966 to 1977 and subsequently Member of the Lok Sabha till 1980.
As a Member of Parliament, he made a significant contribution in the fields of Foreign Policy, Defence Policy, Land Reforms, Freedom of the Press and Electoral Reforms. He was Chairman of the Joint Parliamentary Committee for the first legislatio on Environment in India known as the Prevention of Water Pollution Bill.
He was also the Secretary of the Indian Parliamentary and Scientific Committee of which Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru was the President and Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri, the Chairman. He was Editor of a Quarterly Journal “Science in Parliament”.
He is a Life Member of the Servants of the People Society and Chairman of the Punjab Branch. He was Chairman, Committee of Railway Reservations and Bookings from 1972 to 1976. A strong protagonist of India going Nuclear, he has been a Member of the Executive Council of the Institute of Defence Studies and Analysis.
He held prominent offices in the “Congress Party and later Janata Party. He was Member of the A. I. C. C. and Secretary of the Congress Parliamentary party as well of the Executive Committee for a number of years. A Member of the National Executi e of Janata Party from 1977 to 1988 and the Executive Committee of Janata Parliamentary Party.
He was the founding General Secretary of the People’s Union of Civil Liberties and Democratic Rights, founded in 1976 of which Shri Jayaprakash Narayan was the President.
He held a National Seminar against the 49th Amendment of the Constitution brought forward by the Government during the Emergency.
He has been an advocate of integrating Science and Spirituality and was a Member of the Committee founded by the Sarva Seva Sangh. He is a Member of the Board of Management of the Gandhian Institute of Studies, Varanasi, formed by Jayaprakash Nar yan. He is a connoisseur of Urdu Poetry which he has inherited from his upbrining at Lahore.
Shri Krishan Kant is a prolific Writer and has contributed profusely to prominent dailies and periodicals on issues relating to national and international politics, culture and science policy. His wife, Mrs. SUMAN KANT, is a prominent Social Worker. She is a Champion of WOMEN’S RIGHTS and is the General Secretary of the MAHILA DAKSHITA SAMITI.