Naveen Patnaik was born on October 16, 1946 in Cuttack in a Karan family to Biju Patnaik, former Chief Minister of Odisha, and his wife Gyan Patnaik. Patnaik was educated at The Doon School. After that he attended Kirori Mal College, Delhi University, and he qualified for Bachelor of Arts degree.
Patnaik is a writer and had for most part of his youth been away from both politics and Odisha, but after his father Biju Patnaik’s demise, he entered politics in 1997 and a year later founded the Biju Janata Dal named after Biju Patnaik which won the state election with the BJP as its alliance and formed the government in which Patnaik became Chief Minister. He was a member of the Consultative Committee of Ministry of Steel & Mines, Member of Standing Committee on Commerce, and Member Library Committee of Parliament. A year later the Janta Dal split and Patnaik founded the Biju Janta Dal which in alliance with the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) performed well and Patnaik was selected the Union Minister for Mines in the cabinet of A.B.Vajpayee. However, as the BJD won the majority of seats in alliance with the BJP in the Odisha Assembly elections, Patnaik resigned from the Union cabinet and was sworn in as the Chief Minister of Odisha in 2000. All this led to the rise in the popularity of A. B. Vajpayee and the BJP, the NDA was again victorious in 2004 and Patnaik continued as the Chief Minister
The BJD won a resounding victory in both the Vidhan Sabha (State Assembly) as well as the Lok Sabha elections in 2009, bagging 14 out of 21 Lok Sabha seats and 103 of the 147 assembly seats and was sworn in as the Chief Minister of Odisha on May 21, 2009 for the third consecutive term.
Naveen Patnaik was felicitated by the United Nations (UN) for an effort to evacuate nearly a million people ahead of tropical storm, Cyclone Phailin, that made a landfall on coastal Odisha in October 2013.