|RIP Anita Kaul|
1979 batch retired IAS officer of Karnataka cadre — Anita Kaul died early this week aged 62. Hailing from Delhi and married to a fellow IAS officer, Mrs Kaul retired as union secretary in the department of justice. But if one piece of her achievement as a civil servant is to be chosen, it’s clearly her stellar role in crafting…the Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education (RTE) Act, 2009. Anita Kaul had a long innings in the union ministry of human resource development (HRD) — first as joint secretary between 2006 and 2010 and then as additional secretary in 2010-2012. It was during this period, she played a key role in the policy changes in the country’s elementary education.
An MA in linguistics from Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) in Delhi, she did her graduation in German from Fergusson College, Pune.
As an IAS, she was deputy commissioner of Karnataka’s Chickmagalur district. Between 1988 and 1992, she was in Delhi on Central government deputation. First, she was a deputy secretary in the department of culture and then in the department of education.
Apart from serving in Bengaluru, Mrs Kaul was also posted in Karnataka’s Gulbarga and Shimoga. She rose up to the rank of additional chief secretary in the state before being appointed as union secretary.
A notable feature of her 35 years long career in IAS was that she spent as high as 25 years in social sectors including education, health, nutrition and issues related to women and children.
In HRD ministry at the Centre, she played a key role in enforcing the Constitutional (86th Amendment) Act, 2002 that had provisions of making free and compulsory education a Fundamental Right.
She was a life member on the Board of Trustees of the Foundation of Education and Development, Jaipur. This is a body that works in integrated education of adolescents. She was also a Member of the governing body of Hyderabad-based Rainbow Foundation that works in the field of street and homeless children. She was also a member of the board of directors in the Centre on the Death Penalty under National Law University, New Delhi. Post retirement, she became the director of New Delhi-based research organization — Council for Social Development.