Published on September 4th, 2017
Nirmala Sitharaman is an Indian politician, currently serving as the Defence Minister of India. Sitharaman formerly served as a Minister of State for Finance and Corporate Affairs under the Ministry of Finance and the Minister for Commerce and Industry with independent charge. Before that, she acted as a national spokesperson for the Bharatiya Janata Party.When BJP came to power in 2014, she was first allotted a Rajya Sabha seat, from Andhra Pradesh. Currently, she is elected to the Rajya Sabha from Karnataka.
When Nirmala Sitharaman took oath as Cabinet Minister at Rashtarpati Bhavan’s opulent Durbar Hall, little did she know she would be making a history. Hour after the third Cabinet expansion of the Narendra Modi government, the announcement that became the talking point of the rejig was Sitharaman’s appointment as new Defence Minister.
As India’s first full-time Defence Minister, this JNU alumni is now part of the strategic Cabinet Council on Security. She is the second woman minister after Sushma Swaraj to be part of the CCS.
1. Born on August 18, 1959 in Madurai, Sitharaman did her schooling and graduation from Tiruchirapalli. She also holds a Masters in Economics degree from the prestigious Jawaharlal Nehru University.
2. She met her husband, Parakala Prabhakar, an Andhraite from Narsapuram, Andhra Pradesh while studying in the Jawaharlal Nehru University.
3. Later she moved to London where she worked as Senior Manager (Research and Analysis) with Price Waterhouse.
4. Sitharaman also had a short stint with the BBC World Service.
5. She joined the BJP in 2006 and was inducted in the Modi government on May 26, 2014 as Commerce Minister.
6. She is married to Dr Parakala Prabhakar, alumnus of Jawharlal Nehru University and London School of Economics. The couple has a daughter.
7. She Contested and won a by-election to the Rajya Sabha from the state of Andhra Pradesh.
8. Nirmala played an important role in the run up to the 2014 elections by effectively projecting the Modi-for-PM message.
9. Nirmala is a founder member of Pranava School in Hyderabad and was a member of the National Commission for Women from 2003-05.
10. Sitharaman then served at Pricewaterhouse Coopers as a Senior Manager and later for the BBC World Service.
11. She was working as a part of a team of six spokespersons headed by Ravi Shankar Prasad, for Bharatiya Janata Party.