While a member of the INC, Scindia was a Minister of State with independent charge for Power in the cabinet of prime minister Manmohan Singh from October 2012 until May 2014. In March 2020, he severed all ties with Congress and joined BJP.
Scindia is a grandson of Jivajirao Scindia, the last Maharaja of the princely state of Gwalior, who, although joining the Dominion of India in 1947, was allowed his former titles and privileges, including an annual remuneration called the privy purse. Upon his death in 1961, his son, Madhavrao Scindia (Jyotiraditya's father) became titular Maharajah of Gwalior, as the 26th amendment to the Constitution of India promulgated in 1971, the Government of India abolished all official symbols of princely India, including titles, privileges, and privy purses.
On 30 September 2001, the Guna constituency fell vacant due to the death of Scindia's father the sitting MP Madhavrao Scindia in an airplane crash in Uttar Pradesh. On 18 December, he formally joined the INC and pledged to uphold the "secular, liberal and social justice values" of his father.
On 24 February, Scindia won the by-election in Guna, defeating his nearest rival, Desh Raj Singh Yadav of the BJP, by a margin of approximately 450,000 votes. He was re-elected in May 2004, and was introduced to the Union Council of Ministers in 2007 as Minister of State for Communications and Information Technology. He was then re-elected in 2009 for a third consecutive term and became Minister of State for Commerce and Industry.
Scindia in 2008 as Minister of State for Communications & Information Technology
Scindia was appointed Minister of State for Power in November 2012 in a cabinet reshuffle which drafted a number of younger politicians into the Indian cabinet, including two other scions of princely families, R. P. N. Singh and Jitendra Singh.
Scindia was among the richest ministers in the UPA government with assets nearly Rs. 25 crore ($5 million) including investments in Indian and foreign securities worth over ₹16 crore (US$2 million) and jewellery worth over ₹5.7 crore (US$799,140). In 2010, he filed a legal claim to be the sole inheritor of the property belonging to his late father worth ₹20,000 crore (US$3 billion), however this was challenged in court by his aunts.[clarification needed]
Citing disgruntlement with the INC leadership, he quit the party on 10 March 2020 to join the BJP. The party then released a statement claiming that he had been expelled for "anti-party activities". He later joined the BJP on 11 March 2020. Other MLAs loyal to him also resigned from the INC and their MLA posts in a political crisis that led to the resignation of Kamal Nath as Chief Minister.
On 19 June 2020, Scindia was elected a BJP Rajya Sabha MP from Madhya Pradesh.
^1.Ramusack, Barbara N. (2004). The Indian princes and their states. Cambridge University Press. p. 278. ISBN978-0-521-26727-4. Retrieved 6 November 2011., "Through a constitutional amendment passed in 1971, Indira Gandhi stripped the princes of the titles, privy purses and regal privileges which her father's government had granted." (p 278). 2.Naipaul, V. S. (8 April 2003), India: A Wounded Civilization, Random House Digital, Inc., pp. 37–, ISBN978-1-4000-3075-0, retrieved 6 November 2011 Quote: "The princes of India – their number and variety reflecting to a large extent the chaos that had come to the country with the break up of the Mughal empire – had lost real power in the British time. Through generations of idle servitude they had grown to specialize only in style. A bogus, extinguishable glamour: in 1947, with Independence, they had lost their state, and Mrs. Gandhi in 1971 had, without much public outcry, abolished their privy purses and titles." (pp 37–38). 3. Schmidt, Karl J. (1995), An atlas and survey of South Asian history, M.E. Sharpe, p. 78, ISBN978-1-56324-334-9, retrieved 6 November 2011 Quote: "Although the Indian states were alternately requested or forced into union with either India or Pakistan, the real death of princely India came when the Twenty-sixth Amendment Act (1971) abolished the princes' titles, privileges, and privy purses." (page 78). 4.Breckenridge, Carol Appadurai (1995), Consuming modernity: public culture in a South Asian world, U of Minnesota Press, pp. 84–, ISBN978-0-8166-2306-8, retrieved 6 November 2011 Quote: "The third stage in the political evolution of the princes from rulers to citizens occurred in 1971, when the constitution ceased to recognize them as princes and their privy purses, titles, and special privileges were abolished." (page 84). 5.Guha, Ramachandra (5 August 2008), India After Gandhi: The History of the World's Largest Democracy, HarperCollins, pp. 441–, ISBN978-0-06-095858-9, retrieved 6 November 2011 Quote: "Her success at the polls emboldened Mrs. Gandhi to act decisively against the princes. Through 1971, the two sides tried and failed to find a settlement. The princes were willing to forgo their privy purses, but hoped at least to save their titles. But with her overwhelming majority in Parliament, the prime minister had no need to compromise. On 2 December she introduced a bill to amend the constitution and abolish all princely privileges. It was passed in the Lok Sabha by 381 votes to six, and in the Rajya Sabha by 167 votes to seven. In her own speech, the prime minister invited 'the princes to join the elite of the modern age, the elite which earns respect by its talent, energy and contribution to human progress, all of which can only be done when we work together as equals without regarding anybody as of special status.' " (page 441). 6. Cheesman, David (1997). Landlord power and rural indebtedness in colonial Sind, 1865-1901. London: Routledge. pp. 10–. ISBN978-0-7007-0470-5. Retrieved 6 November 2011. Quote: "The Indian princes survived the British Raj by only a few years. The Indian republic stripped them of their powers and then their titles." (page 10). 7. Merriam-Webster, Inc (1997), Merriam-Webster's geographical dictionary, Merriam-Webster, pp. 520–, ISBN978-0-87779-546-9, retrieved 6 November 2011 Quote: "Indian States: "Various (formerly) semi-independent areas in India ruled by native princes .... Under British rule ... administered by residents assisted by political agents. Titles and remaining privileges of princes abolished by Indian government 1971." (page 520). 8. Ward, Philip (September 1989), Northern India, Rajasthan, Agra, Delhi: a travel guide, Pelican Publishing, pp. 91–, ISBN978-0-88289-753-0, retrieved 6 November 2011 Quote: "A monarchy is only as good as the reigning monarch: thus it is with the princely states. Once they seemed immutable, invincible. In 1971 they were "derecognized," their privileges, privy purses and titles all abolished at a stroke" (page 91)