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In conversation with Nidhi Choudhary, Commissioner for Skill Development, Maharashtra



In conversation with Nidhi Choudhary, Commissioner for Skill Development, Maharashtra

Change is hard, isn’t it? We humans are creatures of habit, comfortably settled into our routines and resistant to disrupting the status quo. Making a major life pivot – switching careers, moving across the country, or radically altering our lifestyle – can seem daunting, even terrifying. Our minds instinctively recoil at the uncertainty and challenges that await.

And yet, those who overcome the inertia and inertia capably navigate profound life transitions often find remarkable opportunities and fulfillment on the other side. With courageous self-reflection, meticulous planning, and determined perseverance, they pivot from stagnation to reinvention, from disillusionment to passion reinvigorated.


Nidhi Choudhary is one such person. A manager in the RBI at a young age, she had a plush job many would covet. But something in her yearned for more, and chose a different path as she appeared for her IAS exam. Having successfully gone on to carve a successful path for herself, she speaks with Marksmen Daily as part of our series on #WomenTalk about how she defied the odds and cleared the highest hurdles to reshape her professional path.

Can you share your life journey from Rajasthan to your current position? 

I was born in a village called Kathoti in Nagaur, Rajasthan, in 1984. Growing up, the fate of girls in our village was often determined by child marriage. Despite these challenges, I pursued my education in government institutions. At 22, I was selected in the RBI as a Manager. Juggling preparation for the UPSC during my first pregnancy, I joined the IAS in 2012. Since then, I have executed various roles, including land acquisitions, election management, and disaster response during the COVID-19 pandemic, as a District Collector. Currently, I serve as the Commissioner for Skill Development in the Government of Maharashtra.

Leaving an RBI job to pursue your passion, tell us something about it.

Leaving a stable job at RBI was not easy, but with support from my family, I pursued my passion for the UPSC. It was a challenging but rewarding decision that shaped me professionally.

What obstacles have you faced in your life to reach your current position? 

Overcoming child marriage norms, eve-teasing, and societal pressures were significant challenges. Despite these, I pursued my dreams, including an inter-caste, inter-state marriage and preparing for the UPSC while pregnant. Life has been a series of challenges, but I’ve kept moving forward.


What inspires you to keep going? 

I strongly believe that we are given a coin called ‘talent’ by GOD, and upon our death, we are asked how we utilized it. My goal is not only to retain my talent but to multiply it and return it to GOD in abundance. This drives me to strive for excellence and shine even in the darkest moments of life.

What do you believe women need in life to shine? 

Women need dreams on a psychological level and financial independence on a material level. It’s essential to realize that we have our dreams and aspirations, separate from societal expectations.

Who is your role model, and why? 

My mother and sister are my role models. My mother fought for our education and supported me through my challenges. My sister, the first female IPS from our district, inspired me to pursue UPSC despite being pregnant at the time.

Indian women excel in various fields like sports and aviation. What suggestions do you have to boost the morale of all Indian women? 

Treat ups and downs as stepping stones in life. Perseverance and hard work lead to success. Indian women are strong at their core; they need to harness this strength to strive for excellence.

What message do you want to give to every woman in the world? 

Smile through adversity, stay strong, and believe in yourself. Your resilience will lead you to shine brightly.

You are currently the Commissioner for Skill Development at the Government of Maharashtra. How is skill development helping women to shine like the stars? 

Skill development offers women the opportunity to become financially independent. Our department focuses on promoting women-led startups and ensuring gender parity in skill training programs.

What social message do you have for all female aspirants of the country who look up to you as their role model? 

Pursuing your dreams and sustaining in the Service may not be easy, but the experiences are enriching. Join the Service for a roller-coaster experiential ride, and you will never regret it.