existing skill development programmes from ministries such as labour and MSME etc., there have been some indications that 59-year-old Ms Kumar could be roped in to steer Narendra Modi’s pet project of skill development and entrepreneurship.
An MSc in mathematics, Ms Kumar completed her post-graduation in public administration in 1993 from prestigious Harvard University. Before joining as labour secretary, she had served as secretary, border management under the ministry of home affairs (MHA).
She was a collector in Gandhinagar district in later 1980s, and when Manmohan Singh began the process of economic liberalisation in 1991, she was a deputy secretary in the department of economic affairs (DEA) directly participating in that watershed moment.
Between 2002 and 2007, Ms Kumar was Director General of National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT). In Gujarat, she was principal secretary, industries and mines, between 2008 and 2010 when PM Modi was the state chief minister.
The new department of skill development currently attached with sport and youth affairs ministry has not been functional as yet despite the new government could kick-start some of projects in the first 100 days of its existence. No skill development team has been put in place as yet, and there are gossips that the new department could move to HRD ministry headed by minister Smriti Irani.