Sajid Javid was born in Rochdale, near Manchester, to Muslim parents who migrated to Britain from Pakistan. His successor Rishi Sunak was born in Southampton to Hindu parents who moved to the UK from India in the 1960s.
Rishi Sunak has been appointed Chancellor of the Exchequer – the UK’s finance minister – in succession to Sajid Javid, who resigned on a point of principle on Thursday, 13 February, after being ordered to sack his closest advisers.
Sunak, 39, has been the Conservative MP for Richmond in North Yorkshire since 2015, when he was selected for the safe seat in succession to former Foreign Secretary William Hague.
His rise from backbencher to Chancellor – the second most important position in the government – in less than five years is nothing short of meteoric.
The Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, has promoted him from Chief Secretary to the Treasury, a role he was given in July 2019.
Prior to that he was the parliamentary under-secretary for housing, communities and local government under Theresa May.
Sunak, like Johnson, campaigned for leave during the Brexit referendum campaign in 2016 and voted three times for Theresa May’s deal.
He was an “early adopter” of the Boris Johnson project when the former Foreign Secretary launched his leadership bid in the spring of last year.
Son of Immigrants Educated at One of the World’s Top Universities
Sunak was born in Southampton where his parents – immigrants from the Punjab – worked as a GP and a pharmacist.
He was educated privately at Winchester College – one of the top schools in England – and then went to Oxford University, where he read Philosophy, Politics and Economics, which is the classic course for wannabe politicians.
Sunak got an MBA at Stanford University in the US and then got a job with Goldman Sachs, before working for a hedge fund in London.
He met his wife Akshata at Stanford and they have two daughters.
His father-in-law is Indian billionaire N R Narayana Murthy, who runs Bangalore-based IT consulting firm Infosys.
Sunak is a cricket and football enthusiast and also a Bollywood movie fan.
There is little doubting Sunak’s intellect but his performance on television and in Parliament has not impressed all the critics.
After he represented the Tories in a seven-way General Election debate on ITV he was described by Guardian columnist Rowena Mason as “cheesy and wooden”.
He has now been rewarded with one of the most high profile jobs in the Cabinet and will take over the preparation of the Budget, which will be announced on 11 March.
The BBC’s Business Editor Simon Jack said the prime minister suspected Javid might resign if pushed to get rid of his advisers and he described Sunak as an “oven-ready” Chancellor.