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Nirmala Sitharaman Biography

Nirmala Sitharaman Biography

Nirmala Sitharaman is the second women Defense Minister of India. She is the first full-time women Defense Minister of India. She is associated with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). She joined the BJP in 2006. She is the former Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Finance and Coporate Affairs. She is a BJP leader from a pro-Congress family. She is an avid reader and maintains her personal Twitter handle @nsitharaman. Sitharaman laid the foundation of School Pranava in Hyderabad. An alumnus of Jawaharlal Nehru University, she had served at Pricewater Coopers and BBC World Service.

Family background

Born on 18th August 1959 in Madurai, Tamil Nadu to middle class parents Shri Narayan Sitharaman and Smt. Savitri. Nirmala Sitharaman’s father worked in Railways while her mother was a homemaker. She inherited her father’s discipline and her mother’s love for books. While studying in Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), she met Parakala Prabhakar and later got married to him in 1986 and moved to London. Dr. Parakala Prabhaka is an alumnus of London School of Economics (LSE) and JNU. Shri Prabhaka was from a pro-congress family while Nirmala Sitharaman had an inclination towards the Bhartiya Janata Party. However, in 1991, Nirmala Sitharaman and Dr. Prabhakar returned to India and moved to Narsapuram in the coastal Andhra Pradesh. Later they were blessed with a daughter and settled in Hyderabad.


Nirmala Seetaraman completed her schooling and bachelors from Seethalakshmi Ramaswamy College Sitharaman pursued her Bachelors from Seethalakshmi Ramaswamy College, Tiruchirappalli. Later on she pursued her Masters in Economics from Jawaharlal Nehru (JNU) University, Delhi in 1980. She also has a Ph.D in the Indo-European textile trade within the GATT framework and M.Phil. Sitharaman has served at the Pricewaterhouse Coopers as a senior manager and later on for BBC World Service. She was formerly member of the National Commission for Women from 2003-2005. She established a school in Hyderabad called Pranava School.

Political Career

In 2006, Sitharaman joined the Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP). She was made a member of the National Executive. It was in Nitin Gadkari’s tenure that Nirmala Sitharaman was appointed as one of the six party spokespersons headed by Ravi Shankar Prasad in March 2010. She is a BJP leader from a family Congress supporters. Sitharaman joined the BJP in 2006 while her husband had joined the Prajarajyam Party floated by film star Chiranjeevi in 2007. After the historic win of the BJP in 2014 General Elections, Nirmala Sitharaman was appointed as the Minister of State (independent charge) for Commerce & Industry as well as MOS for Finance and Coporate Affairs. In June 2014, Nirmala Sitharaman was unanimously elected to the Rajya Sabha from Andhra Pradesh. She became the second women Defense Minister of India in a recent cabinet reshuffle by Prime Minister, Narendra Modi held on 3rd Sept’17. Nirmala Sitharaman is appointed as India’s first full time Defense Minister. She is the second women to be part of the Cabinet Committee on Security (CCS).

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