Rishi Sunak became the UK's first Indian-origin Prime Minister after former PM Boris Johnson pulled out of the leadership race in a surprise move yesterday and British Conservative leader Penny Mordaunt also pulled out of the race to 10 Downing Street today.
Candidates were required to secure the support of at least 100 Conservative MPs by 1300 GMT or 6:30 PM IST today and Sunak, who crossed that threshold by Friday night and amassed nearly 200 public nominations from Tory lawmakers, became the only Tory leader with the required support.
Sunak is the first Indian-origin leader who will take charge of Britain's top post. The 42-year-old is the son-in-law of Infosys co-founder Narayana Murthy. He was first elected as a member of Parliament from Richmond (Yorks) constituency in 2015 and re-elected in 2017 and 2019.
In February 2020, he was appointed as the Chancellor of the Exchequer in Boris Johnson's cabinet, a position he held till July this year when he resigned following reports of multiple government scandals. He led every single nomination round in the party's leadership selection but lost to Liz Truss in the general party election.
British Prime Minister Liz Truss announced her resignation just 45 days into her term, making her the PM with the briefest term in British history. Experts stated that her policies sent the fragile British economy into a downward spiral, reduced the value of the pound and panicked financial markets.
Many Indians are delighted at the prospect of Rishi Sunak becoming the first person of Indian origin to become British prime minister, just as Hindus across the world celebrate Diwali.
UK's former Indian-origin Home Secretary Suella Braverman, who resigned a few days before Truss' resignation, has come out in support of Sunak as the country's next Prime Minister.
Braverman said, "we need unity, stability, and efficiency, and Rishi Sunak is the only candidate that fits the bill and I am proud to support him."
Rishi Sunak was backed by another Indian-origin former minister Priti Patel.