Rau studied political science and musicology and graduated with a Master of Arts. In addition, she was active in sports as track and field athlete and represented the state of Maharashtra in Indian Championships in the disciplines of long jump, high jump, hurdles, discus throw and sprint.
Her political career began in 1972 when she as a member of the Legislative Assembly of Maharashtra ( Maharashtra Vidhan Sabha ) has been selected as a candidate of the Indian National Congress ( INC) for the first time. Later she was also Chairman of the INC in Maharashtra.
They became the members of the Indian lower house, the Lok Sabha, elected in 1999 and represented there during the 13th legislative period to 2004 the constituency Wardha.
On July 19, 2008, she was appointed as the successor of Vishnu Sadashiv Kokje to the Governor of the state of Himachal Pradesh. As at 1 December 2009, the Governor of the State of Rajasthan, Shailendra Kumar Singh died, she was on the next day in addition Singh's successor.
After she was sworn in on 25 January 2010 as the Governor of Rajasthan handed them the same day the Office of the Governor of Himachal Pradesh Urmila Singh. The Office of the Governor of Rajasthan she practiced until her death from a heart attack on 26 April 2010.