As Canada’s prime minister Justin Trudeau revealed his new cabinet on Wednesday which featured newcomer Anita Indira Anand, making her the first Hindu to be a federal minister in the country.
The cabinet includes three other Indo-Canadian ministers, all Sikhs, and each of whom was a member of the previous government.
Anand, who was elected to the House of Commons for the first time in the October federal elections, was named the minister of public services and procurement.
Anand emerged victorious from the riding of Oakville in Ontario, which in itself was historic as she was the first-ever Hindu woman to be elected to Parliament.
Anand was born in the town of Kentville in the province of Nova Scotia. Her parents are both medical professionals from India. Her late mother Saroj Ram was from the Amritsar area in Punjab and her father SV Anand is a Tamilian.
She also conducted research for the Commission of Inquiry into the Investigation of the terrorist bombing of Air India Flight 182.
Anand is one of the seven newcomers to the cabinet for the new Trudeau government. As in 2015 when he formed his first Cabinet, half the appointees now are women.
In a statement released when the new Cabinet was announced, Trudeau said, “Today, I can introduce the strong, diverse, and experienced team that will work together to tackle the big issues that matter to people from coast to coast to coast.”