Known for her go-getting attitude as the food processing minister in the NDA-I, Harsimrat Kaur Badal of Shiromani Akali Dal took oath as a Union cabinet minister at the Rashtrapati Bhavan on Thursday. The portfolio she would hold is yet to be announced.
A three-time parliamentarian from Bathinda in Punjab, Harsimrat, 53, belongs to a family that traces its lineage to 18th-century royalty.
Longtime ally of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), SAD managed to win only two Lok Sabha seats. Co-incidently, her husband Sukhbir Singh Badal won the other seat.
Born in New Delhi in the family stream of Attar Singh Majithia, a war veteran general of Maharaja Ranjit Singh’s army, Kaur is married to Sukhbir Singh Badal, who is the party president and former Deputy Chief Minister of Punjab.
Her father-in-law Parkash Singh Badal is a four-time Chief Minister. She is a graduate of Delhi University with Diploma in textile technology.
Kaur had first made headlines with her efforts against female foeticide with the launch of a non-profit organisation called ‘Nanhi Chhaan’ in 2008.
She made her political debut the following year, contesting from Bathinda against Raninder Singh, the son of Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, and winning by over 1.2 lakh votes.