Pratibha Patil is the thirteenth President of India. and the first woman to hold this post. The Chief Justice of India K.G.Balakrishnan swore her in as the President of India on 25th July 2007.She succeeded Dr.A.P.J.Abdul Kalam.
Pratibha Patil was born in Nandgaon in Maharastra .She completed her schooling from R.R.school at Jalgaon .She completed her Masters from Mooljee Jaitha (M.J.) College, Jalgaon (affiliated to North Maharashtra University, Jalgaon) and obtained a law degree from the Government Law College, Mumbai (affiliated to University of Bombay). She was a very good table tennis player and during her college days she represented and won various inter college tournaments.She is married to Devisingh Ransingh Shekhawat and the couple have a son and a daughter.
Pratibha Patil became actively involved in politics from 1962 at the age of twenty seven.Under the guidance of veteran Congrees leader and ex Chief Minister she became the deputy minister for education after reelection in 1967 in the Vasantrao Naik ministry. In the next tenure from 1972 -78 she was the full Cabinet Minister for the state . Under several Congress chief ministers, Vasantdada Patil, Babasaheb Bhosle, S. B. Chavan and Sharad Pawar she handled the portfolios of tourism ,social welfare and housing . She was re-elected to the Assembly every time , either from Jalgaon or the nearby Edlabad constituencies.In 1985, she was elected to the Rajya Sabha as a Congress candidate.
She served as the deputy chairwoman in the Rajya Sabha from November 1986 to November 1988.In 1990 when her term expired she contested the 10th Lok Sabha elections from the Amravati constituency. She has also served as Director of National Federation of Urban Co-operative Banks & Credit Societies and the Member of Governing Council, National Co-operative, Union of India.
In November 2004 she was chosen to become the Governer of Rajasthan when Vasundhara Raje was the Chief Minister of Rajasthan..She was the second politician from Maharashtra in this post, the first being Vasantdada Patil.She resigned as the Governer of Rajasthan on 21st June 2007 due to her Presidential nomination . Pratibha Patil was nominated by the ruling United Progressive Alliance and Indian Left. After defeating her nearest rival Bhairon Singh Shekhawat by over 300,000 votes, Patil became the President of India on 19th July 2007.