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Former Chief Justice of India P. N. Bhagwati passes away at 95

P. N. Bhagwati
P. N. Bhagwati
Former Chief Justice of India P N Bhagwati, who helped introduce public interest litigation in the country's judicial system and was considered as the father of human rights jurisprudence, passed away after a brief illness here this evening.
 
He was 95.
 
He is survived by his wife Prabhavati Bhagwati and three daughters - Parul Jayakar, Pallavi Shroff and Sonali Bhagwati. His funeral is slated to be held here on Saturday, sources said.
 
Born on December 21, 1921, Prafullachandra Natwarlal Bhagwati served as the 17th Chief Justice of India from July 12, 1985 to December 20, 1986, when he retired.
 
During a long and illustrious career, he came to be considered, along with Justice V. R. Krishna Iyer, as one of the pioneers of judicial activism in India. He was also the propounder of the "polluter pays principle".
 
Justice Bhagwati's father Justice Natwarlal H. Bhagwati was a judge of the Supreme Court, while his brother Jagdish Bhagwati is a renowned economist.
 
Justice Bhagwati studied at Elphinstone College in Mumbai and took a degree in mathematics (Hons.) from Bombay University and later received a law degree from the same university after studying at Government Law College in Mumbai.
 
He began practising law in the Bombay High Court before he was appointed as a judge of the Gujarat High Court in July, 1960. He was appointed the Chief Justice of that court in September, 1967. In July 1973, he was appointed a judge of the Supreme Court of India. 
 
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The Government honoured him with the Padma Vibhushan, the country's second highest civilian honour, in 2007. He served as a member of the United Nations Human Rights Committee from 1995 to 2009 and also served as its chairman in 2001-03.
 
Justice Bhagwati attracted a lot of criticism when, in 1976, he was part of a five-judge bench which delivered a controversial judgement in the ADM Jabalpur v. Shivkant Shukla case. The bench held that, during the Emergency of 1975-77, a person's right to not be unlawfull detained could be suspended, thus upholding the then Government's move to suspend fundamental rights, including the Right to Life. Later, in 2011, he agreed with the popular view that the judgement was "short-sighted" and apologised for it.
 
Two years after that judgement, Justice Bhagwati was again part of a five-judge bench which delivered a landmark verdict in the Maneka  Gandhi case, which held that the Right to Life meant the Right to Live with Dignity and not just lead a mere animal existence.
 
He was against the death sentence and held in a dissenting verdict in the Bachan Singh vs State of Punjab case, that capital punishment was discriminatory and violation of Article 19 and 21 of the Constitution, as it was invariably against weaker and marginalised sections of society. He felt that such cases should be heard by five-judge benches of the apex court and the death penalty should be awarded only when all the five judges agreed.
 
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Gaitri Issar Kumar appointed as Ambassador to Belgium

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Ms. Gaitri Issar Kumar, Additional Secretary-cum-Social Secretary to the President of India, has been appointed as the new Ambassador of India to Belgium.
 
Ms. Issar Kumar, an Indian Foreign Service (IFS) officer of the 1986 batch, will also be accredited as the Ambassador of India to the European Union, a press release from the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said.
 
The MEA also announced that Ms. Reenat Sandhu, Deputy Chief of Mission, Embassy of India in Washington, D.C. (IFS: 1989), has been appointed as the country's next Ambassador to Italy.
 
Mr. Ajit Vinayak Gupte, (IFS: 1991), presently Joint Secretary in the MEA, has been appointed as Ambassador to Denmark.
 
The officers are expected to take up their new assignments shortly, the release added.
 
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Rajya Sabha member and Congress leader P. Govardhan Reddy passes away

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Senior Congress leader and Rajya Sabha member from Telangana Palvai Govardhan Reddy passed away at Kullu in Himachal Pradesh after suffering a cardiac arrest there this morning.
 
He was 80. He is survived by his wife, two sons and a daughter. 
 
Sources close to his family said his body would be brought to Delhi and then flown to Hyderabad, where it would be cremated tomorrow.
 
Mr. Reddy had left here this morning by air for Kullu to attend a meeting of a Parliamentary Standing Committee scheduled to be held there. He suffered a cardiac arrest soon after landing there and was rushed to the Government hospital in the town, where he breathed his last around 10.30 am.
 
Mr. Reddy served as a member of the Andhra Pradesh Legislative Assembly from 1967 to 1985 and then from 1999 to 2004. He served as Minister of State in the State Council of Ministers in the early 1980s. He was elected to the Andhra Pradesh Legislative Council in 2007 and to the Rajya Sabha in 2012.
 
Vice-President and Rajya Sabha Chairman M. Hamid Ansari condoled the passing away of Mr. Reddy and described it as a personal loss.
 
"Shri Reddy was an active and respected member of Rajya Sabha since 2012, and his presence would be missed by all who worked with him. Shri Reddy will be remembered for his relentless efforts towards the welfare of farmers in Telangana," he said.
 
Telangana Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao expressed shock and grief over the sudden demise of Mr. Reddy. He directed the Chief Secretary of the State Government and the State's Resident Commissioner in Delhi to make arrangements to bring the mortal remains of Mr. Reddy to Hyderabad.
 
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Ruchira Kamboj appointed as High Commissioner to South Africa

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Ms. Ruchira Kamboj, presently Ambassador/Permanent Representative to Permanent Delegation of India to UNESCO, Paris has been appointed as the next High Commissioner of India to South Africa.
 
A press release from the Ministry of External Affairs said Ms. Kamboj, an Indian Foreign Service (IFS) officer of the 1987 bath, was expected to take up her new assignment shortly.
 
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Param Jit Mann appointed as Ambassador to Slovenia

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Mr. Param Jit Mann, presently Ambassador of India to the Slovak Republic, has been appointed as the country's next Ambassador to Slovenia.
 
A press release form the Ministry of External Affairs said Mr. Mann, an Indian Foreign Service (IFS) officer of the 1987 batch, was expected to take up his assignment shortly.
 
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Shashi Shekar Vempati has been appointed as CEO of Prasar Bharati

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Mr. Shashi Shekar Vempati, a former senior executive with IT services major Infosys and digital innovator, has been appointed as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of public broadcaster Prasar Bharati.
 
The appointment has been made on the recommendation of the three- member committee headed by the Vice-President of India, and consisting of Chairman, Press Council of India and the President’s nominee -- the Secretary, Information and Broadcasting.
 
An official press release said the appointment was for a period of five years from the date of assumption of office. Mr. Vempati is currently serving as a Member (part time) of the Prasar Bharati Board since February 2016. 
 
As Part Time Member of the Prasar Bharati Board, Mr. Vempati has served as Chairman of Audit Committee, Member of Finance & Accounts Committee, Technology Committee, Sports Rights Committee and HR Committee. 
 
An alumnus of Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay, Mr. Vempati has over two decades of experience as a technocrat with specialization in areas of Corporate Management, Technology Consulting and Digital Media. He has worked in Infosys for more than a decade as Product Strategist and Digital Innovator in North America. He currently holds two patents “Real Time Business Event Monitoring, Tracking and Execution Architecture” and “System and method for monitoring and management of inventory of products and assets in real time” under his name. 
 
Mr. Vempati has authored books such as “Broadcasting Technologies in India”, “National Digital Security Architecture in India”, “Creating a Global Media Platform out of India”, among others. 
 
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Surgeon Vice-Admiral A. A. Pawar assumes charge as Director General Medical Services (Navy)

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Surgeon Vice-Admiral A. A. Pawar assumed charge as Director General Medical Services (Navy) here today.
 
The Flag Officer is an alumnus of Armed Forces Medical College, Pune and was commissioned in the Indian Navy on March 3, 1980. He is a renowned psychiatrist and was awarded the gold medal by Pune University for standing first in MD (Psychiatry) in the early part of his career. 
 
In an illustrious career spanning 37 years, the officer has several achievements in both professional and administrative fields, an official press release said.
 
In the professional field, the Flag Officer has served with distinction as a psychiatrist in all major hospitals of the Indian Navy and AFMC. On promotion to the rank of Surg Captain, he was posted as Senior Advisor Psychiatry at INHS Asvini. He was the driving force behind setting up of Learning Disorder Centre, the first of its kind in the Armed Forces. 
 
The officer has commanded INHS Asvini and Sanjivani with great distinction. At Sanjivani he introduced facility of ‘Sakhis’ (lady attendants), and initiated a cashless scheme for treatment of naval personnel and their families at Amrita. It was during his tenure that INHS Asvini was awarded Unit Citation and the Raksha Mantri Trophy for the 2nd Best Command hospital. 
 
The Flag Officer has also held various other administrative appointments such as ACMO at Western Naval Command, PDMS (P&M) at IHQ MoD (Navy) and CMO at Eastern Naval Command, Visakhapatnam prior to taking up the appointment of Director General (Org & Pers) in the Office of DGAFMS on September 12, 2016.
 
For his dedication and commitment to the service, he has been awarded Vishisht Seva Medal in 2012, Chief of Naval Staff Commendation in 2012 and Flag Officer Commanding-in-Chief (WNC) Commendation in 2001.
 
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Sanjiv Singh takes over as Chairman of Indian Oil Corporation

Sanjiv Singh
Sanjiv Singh
Mr. Sanjiv Singh has taken over as Chairman of the public sector Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) with effect from today.
 
Prior to his elevation, he was Director (Refineries) on the IndianOil Board since July 2014. 
 
Concurrently, he will also be Chairman of Chennai Petroleum Corporation Ltd. (CPCL) and Hindustan Urvarak and Rasayan Ltd. (HURL) , a joint venture company set up to revive the fertiliser plants at Gorakhpur, Sindri and Barauni, a press release from IOC said.
 
A chemical engineer from IIT-Roorkee with a diploma in management, Mr. Sanjiv Singh joined IndianOil in 1981. He has served IndianOil for over 35 years, spearheading refinery operations as well as mega greenfield and brownfield projects in refining and petrochemicals. 
 
With extensive experience in the refining sector, Mr. Sanjiv Singh played a key role in the setting up, commissioning and stabilisation of two of IndianOil’s biggest greenfield refineries at Panipat and Paradip.
 
The commissioning of IndianOil’s 11th refinery at Paradip in early 2016, with a capex of Rs. 34,555 crore, is his benchmark contribution to the Indian refining sector. He has also steered the successful implementation of the petrochemical projects of Paraxylene/PTA and Naphtha Cracker with downstream units at Panipat Refinery. 
 
As Director (Refineries) of IndianOil, Mr. Singh has endeavoured to improve the operation of IndianOil’s 11 refineries by revamping, debottlenecking and modernisation of process units, together with yield and profitability improvement projects, besides undertaking low-cost capacity expansions. He focussed on innovative technologies to create indigenous capability in the field of technology, while enhancing the company’s profitability. He strongly supports commercialisation of indigenous technologies and has led many such ‘firsts’ in IndianOil refineries like Octamax (for production of high-octane fuel); indJet (production of aviation fuel); inDSK (reduction of sulphur in kerosene); and indeSelect (gasoline desulphurisation), among several others. 
 
Mr. Singh has been a driving force in conceptualising India’s mammoth 60 million tonnes per annum refinery being set-up on the West coast of India, which will transform the refining landscape of India. 
 
Playing a leadership role in the energy sector, he is partnering India’s vision of emerging as a 'refining hub' in South Asia, the release said.
 
A champion of clean and green fuels, Mr. Singh ensured on-schedule rollout of BS-IV fuels across the country in April 2017 and has now set a frenetic pace for IndianOil refineries to meet the tough deadline of introducing BS-VI grade green fuels in the country by April 2020. A staunch advocate of minimum gestation time from concept-to-commissioning, under his stewardship approximately Rs.40,000 crore worth of projects shall be in various stages of implementation in the Corporation, including capex of nearly Rs. 15,000 crore in Refineries Division, in the coming three years. 
 
Mr. Sanjiv Singh is a member of several industry associations and Government bodies. Academically inclined, he is widely travelled in India and abroad and has presented papers in several important national and international forums, the release added.
 
IndianOil, a Maharatna company, is the country's largest commercial enterprise and the top-ranked Indian corporate in Fortune’s ‘Global 500’ listing of the world’s largest corporates. The IndianOil group owns and operates 11 of the country's 23 refineries with a combined refining capacity of 80.7 MMTPA, which represents 35% of the country's refining capacity. The company operates 12,800 km of pipelines and accounts for nearly half of India’s petroleum consumption. 
 
Besides its traditional dominance in the downstream petroleum sector, IndianOil is the second largest player in natural gas and petrochemicals segments as well, and has a significant upstream portfolio of 15 oil & gas assets in India and abroad. 
 
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Jaideep Mazumdar named Ambassador to Philippines, Vani Sarraju Rao posted to Finland

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Mr. Jaideep Mazumdar (IFS: 1989), presently Joint Secretary in the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has been appointed as the next Ambassador of India to the Philippines.
 
An announcement by the MEA also said that Ms. Vani Sarraju Rao (IFS: 1994), presently Joint Secretary in the Ministry, has been appointed as the next Ambassador of India to Finland.
 
Both officers are expected to take up their new assignments shortly, the announcements added.
 
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Tapan Ray to hold additional charge of post of Secretary, Economic Affairs

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Mr. Tapan Ray, IAS (GJ:1982), Secretary, Ministry of Corporate Affairs, has been assigned the additional charge of the post of Secretary, Department of Economic Affairs, Ministry of Finance, on superannuation of Mr. Shaktikanta Das, IAS (TN: 1980), with effect from 01.06.2017 and until further orders.
 
An  official press release said the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) had also approved the assignment of additional charge of the post of Secretary, Department of Chemicals & Petrochemicals to Mr. Jai Priye Prakash, IAS (AM: 82), Secretary, Department of Pharmaceuticals, on superannuation of Mr. Anuj Kumar Bishnoi, IAS (UP: 81), with effect from 01.06.2017 and until further orders.
 
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Former Punjab Police chief K P S Gill passes away

K P S Gill
K P S Gill
Former Punjab Director General of Police K. P. S. Gill, who is credited with crushing Sikh militancy in the state in the late 1980s, passed away at a private hospital here after a brief illness.
 
He was 82.
 
Mr. Kanwar Pal Singh Gill, was admitted to the Sir Ganga Ram Hospital here on May 18. He breathed his last at 2.55 pm today due to end-stage kidney failure and after suffering a cardiac arrest, Dr. D. S. Rana, Chairman, Department of Nephrology and Board of Management of the hospital, said.
 
An officer of the 1958 batch of the Indian Police Service (IPS), Mr. Gill served as Director General of Police of Punjab twice -- first from 1988 to 1990 and then from 1991 to 1995.
 
He also served as Security Adviser to the Chhattisgarh Government in 2006 and as President of the Institute for Conflict Management and President of the Indian Hockey Federation (IHF).
 
Mr. Gill belonged to the Assam cadre of the IPS and he had served in a variety of assignments in that state.
 
He was inducted to Punjab as Inspector General of Police (Operations) in the 1980s and later elevated as Additional Director General of Police and finally as Director General of Police. During his tenure, he led one of the most successful counter-terrorist operations in the world and helped restore normalcy in the state.
 
He continued to be active after his retirement from the IPS in December, 1995 and has served as a member of the National Security Advisory Board (NSAB) constituted by the Government in 1998-99. He also briefly served as Security Adviser to then Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi during May-July 2002 to help handle the situation arising out of the post-Godhra violence in the state.
 
Mr. Gill wrote extensively on politics, governance, internal security and terrorism and is the author of, among other works, Knights of Falsehood (1997).
 
He was honoured by the Government with the Padma Shri award in 1989 for his contribution in civil service. 
 
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IFFCO Jt. MD Rakesh Kapur elected as chairman, International Fertiliser Association

Rakesh Kapur
Rakesh Kapur
Mr. Rakesh Kapur, Joint Managing Director, Indian Farmers Fertiliser Cooperative Limited (IFFCO), has been elected as the chairman of the International Fertilizer Association (IFA) at its annual conference which ended in Marrakech, Morocco yesterday.
 
More than 1400 participants from across the world attended the three-day meeting, a press release from IFFCO said.
 
The Paris-based IFA is the global fertilizer association with about 500 members worldwide, representing 68 countries, including 24 members from India.
 
Mr. Kapur is the third Indian to hold the prestigious position in IFA's 90-year history. He is currently also the chairman of the Fertiliser Association of India (FAI). 
 
IFFCO, now the world's largest fertilizer and marketing cooperative, represents 50 million farmers across  the country. IFFCO, which is currently celebrating its golden jubilee, also holds a strong position in International Cooperative Alliance (ICA).
 
Mr. Kapur is a mechanical engineer from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi, and had joined IFFCO as its CFO in 2005. Prior to that, he had served in the Income Tax Department in the Government as well as in various public sector undertakings.
 
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Tata Sons appoints Saurabh Agrawal as group chief financial officer

Saurabh Agrawal
Saurabh Agrawal
Tata Sons, the promoter of all key Tata companies, has announced the appointment of Mr. Saurabh Agrawal as the group chief financial officer of the company.
 
Mr Agrawal, among India’s most successful investment bankers, brings with him over two decades of rich experience in capital markets to the Tata group, a press release from the company said.
 
Mr. Agrawal, who was head of strategy in the Aditya Birla Group, will join the company with effect from July 2017, the release said.
 
Starting his career in 1995, Mr Agrawal has a sterling record in both strategy and execution, covering a wide range of industries, it said.
 
Before joining the Aditya Birla Group, he served as head of the corporate finance unit of Standard Chartered Bank in India and South Asia, and the head of the investment banking division in DSP Merrill Lynch.
 
The Chairman of Tata Sons, N Chandrasekaran, said, “He brings deep capital markets knowledge and valuable cross-industry experience to this critical leadership role in the Tata group. His expertise will help us in driving rigour and synergy in capital allocation decisions, investment management as well as consolidation and optimisation of the group’s business portfolio. We look forward to his contribution in driving financial performance of the group”.
 
Mr Agrawal said, “I am honoured to join the Tata group. It is an exciting time for the group under the leadership of Mr Chandrasekaran, and I look forward to contributing to the group’s profitable growth with my experience in corporate finance”.
 
Mr Agrawal is a graduate of the Indian Institute of Technology IIT), Roorkee, and has a post graduate management degree from the Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Calcutta.
 
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NRI Mathunny Mathews, the inspiration for movie Airlift, passes away in Kuwait

Mathunny Mathews
Mathunny Mathews
Well-known non-resident Indian (NRI) Mathunny Mathews, popularly known as "Toyota" Sunny, whose role during the aftermath of the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1990 was the inspiration for the Bollywood move Airlift starring Akshay Kumar, passed away at his residence in Kuwait on Saturday.
 
He was 81. He is survived by his wife Mary Mathew, son James and daughters Annie and Susan.
 
His funeral will be held later at his native place of Podippara, Eraviperoor in Pathanamthitta district of Kerala, sources said.
 
A leading light of the Indian expatriate community in Kuwait for more than five decades, Mathews had been ailing for some time.
 
Mathews had played a major role in facilitating the safe evacuation of more than 1.7 lakh Indian nations from Kuwait after Iraqi forces invaded the Gulf state in 1990.
 
Mathews was just around 20 when he first reached Kuwait in 1956 and soon landed a job with the Al Sayer Group, dealers for Toyota vehicles, among other products. He went on to become the general manager of the group before retiring from service in 1989. His lifelong association with Toyota got him the name Toyota Sunny.
 
He was associated with several Indian organisations in Kuwait, including the Indian School at Jabria and various social organisations. He was also one of the founding members of the Indian Arts Circle.
 
After his retirement, he launched some business ventures, including a car rental firm.
 
He was known for his readiness to help individuals in need and support any worthwhile cause.
 
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Air Marshal P N Pradhan takes over as DCIDS (OPS), HQ IDS

Air Marshal P. N. Pradhan
Air Marshal P. N. Pradhan
Air Marshal P. N. Pradhan has taken over as Deputy Chief of Integrated Defence Staff (Operations), HQ IDS here. 
 
He was commissioned as a pilot in the Transport stream of the Indian Air Force (IAF) in 1981. Whilst posted at transport squadrons, he qualified on all operational roles, especially in forward areas and Advanced Landing Grounds (ALGs) in the North-East and Jammu & Kashmir, an official press release said.
 
Air Marshal Pradhan is a Qualified Flying Instructor and has been a pilot examiner on the Boeing and AN-32 aircraft. He was closely associated with the induction and operationalisation of Embraer-135, BBJ and C-130 fleets in the IAF. 
 
He has had four command tenures including command of two operational bases & an Air Force Selection Board. He has held several important appointments at Command and Air Headquarters which include Assistant Chief of Air Staff (Transport and Helicopters) and Assistant Chief of Air Staff (Personal Airmen & Civilians) at Air Headquarters and served as the Senior Air Staff Officer of Southern Air Command.
 
For his distinguished service of an exceptionally high order he was awarded Ati Vishisht Seva Medal on January 26, 2014.
 
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Former Principal Information Officer Rammohan Rao passes away

I. Rammohan Rao
I. Rammohan Rao
Mr. I. Rammohan Rao, former Principal Information Officer (PIO) in the Press Information Bureau (PIB), Government of India, passed away here today. 
 
He was 83.
 
Mr. Rao also served as Press Adviser to four Prime Ministers -- Rajiv Gandhi, V. P. Singh, Chandrasekhar and P. V. Narasimha Rao.
 
Minister for Information & Broadcasting M. Venkaiah Naidu was among those who condoled the death of Mr. Rao.
 
"Shocked to learn about the demise of Sri Ram Mohan Rao Fmr PIO, PIB . A visionary in Govt communication, huge loss for IIS service. RIP," he said on micro-blogging site Twitter.
 
"I.Rammohan Rao, former PIO #PIB passes away. He was a legend and an inspiration to so many of us. Rest in peace, sir," Mr. Frank Naronha, Principal Director General of the Press Information Bureau, said.
 
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Venu Rajamony appointed as Ambassador to The Netherlands

Venu Rajamony
Venu Rajamony
Mr. Venu Rajamony, currently the Press Secretary to the President of India, has been appointed as the country's next Ambassador to The Netherlands.
 
Mr. Rajamony, an Indian Foreign Service (IFS) officer of the 1986 batch, was expected to take up his new assignment shortly, a press release from the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said.
 
The Ministry also announced the appointment of Ms. Pooja Kapur (IFS: 1996), presently Joint Secretary in the MEA here, as the Ambassador to Bulgaria.
 
Mr. Rajamony has been Press Secretary to the Presidence since August 2012.
 
Prior to joining the Rashtrapati Bhavan, Mr. Rajamony served as Joint Secretary and head of Multilateral Institutions Division of the Department of Economic Affairs (DEA), Ministry of Finance from 2010-2012.  
 
Earlier, he served as Consul General of India in Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) from 2007 to 2010. He has also served in the Indian missions in Hong Kong, Beijing, Geneva and Washington, DC.
 
He had begun his career as a journalist, working for Indian Express from 1983-86. 
 
He holds degrees in Law from the Mahatma Gandhi University, Kerala; a Masters in International Studies from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi and a Certificate in Chinese language from University of Hong Kong.
 
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Leila Seth, first woman Chief Justice of a High Court, passes away

Leila Seth
Leila Seth
Ms. Justice Leila Seth, the first woman judge of the Delhi High Court and the first woman Chief Justice of a High Court in India, passed away at her residence in Noida, near here, late last night after suffering a cardio-respiratory attack, sources close to her family said.
 
She was 86. She is survived by her husband Prem Nath Seth, two sons -- writer Vikram Seth and peace activist Shantum, and a daughter, filmmaker Aradhana.
 
Ms. Justice Seth had been treated for brain haemorrhage in a private hospital here in August last year. About two weeks ago, she suffered a fracture in a fall and had been discharged from hospital on May 2.
 
Born in October, 1930, Justice Seth was the first woman to top the Bar examinations in London in 1958. She joined the Bar in 1959 and was appointed as a judge of the Delhi High Court in 1978. She retired as the Chief Justice of the High Court of Himachal Pradesh in 1992, but continued to be active as a member of various commissions of enquiry, including one to study the effects of the popular television series "Shaktiman" on children. She had also served as the one-member commission that investigated the death of well-known businessman Rajan Pillai in Tihar Jail in 1995.
 
Ms. Justice Seth served as a member of the Law Commission of India from 1997-2000.
 
She was also a member of the committee, headed by former Chief Justice of India J. S. Verma, which suggested changes in law related to rape and other sexual crimes against women following the horrific gang-rape and murder of a 23-year-old physiotherapist in Delhi on December 16, 2012.
 
Ms. Justice Seth was the Chair of the Commonwealth Human Rights Initiative (CHRI) for several years, and felt that social action litigation could be aimed at providing a decent standard of living for the poor and working people. 
 
In 2001, she was appointed Vice President of the World Commission on the Ethics of Scientific Knowledge and Technology (COMEST) set up by UNESCO and served for a number of years. 
 
In later years, she did some arbitration work and was involved in human rights activities. She wrote her autobiography "On Balance" (Penguin) and a book for children on the preamble to the Indian Constitution titled, "We the Children of India".
 
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Pratap Bhanu Mehta appointed as Vice-Chancellor of Ashoka University

Pratap Bhanu Mehta
Pratap Bhanu Mehta
Ashoka University at Sonipat in Haryana, set up on the collective philanthropy model, today announced the appointment of well-known political scientist Pratap Bhanu Mehta as its second Vice-Chancellor.
 
Dr. Mehta, who is currently the President and Chief Executive of the centre for Policy Research (CPR) in New Delhi, will assume his new responsibilities from July 1, the announcement said.
 
Regarded as one of India's leading political scientists and an outstanding public intellectual, Dr. Mehta has worked extensively on political theory, intellectual history, constitutional law, politics and society in India, and on international politics. Before he joined as the head of the CPR, he had taught at Harvard University, Jawaharlal Nehru University and the New York University School of Law.
 
Dr Mehta has served on many central government committees, including India’s National Security Advisory Board, the Prime Minister of India’s National Knowledge Commission, and a Supreme Court-appointed committee on elections in Indian universities.
 
He is a a prolific writer; he is an editorial consultant to the Indian Express, and his columns have appeared in dailies including the Financial Times, the Telegraph, the International Herald Tribune, and The Hindu. He is also on the editorial boards of many academic journals, including the American Political Science Review, the Journal of Democracy, and India and Global Affairs.
 
Dr Mehta holds a BA (first class) in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics from Oxford, where he went to St. John's College, and a PhD in politics from Princeton. He received the 2010 Malcom S. Adishehshiah Award and the 2011 Infosys Prize for Social Sciences - Political Science.
 
He is the author of The Burden of Democracy and the co-editor of The Oxford Companion to Indian Constitution, Shaping the Emerging World: India and the Multilateral Order, Non Alignment 2.0, The Oxford Companion to Politics in India, Public Institutions in India: Performance and Design. 
 
Dr. Mehta’s intellectual concerns are profoundly interdisciplinary and he is deeply committed to the idea of a wide-ranging liberal education. He is an outstanding teacher and scholar, the announcement noted.
 
"After conducting an extensive global search, the selection committee – consisting of a few founders, faculty members and academic advisory board members – were of the unanimous opinion that Dr. Mehta is best suited to carry forward and enrich the vision that is already embodied in Ashoka University," it said.
 
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Dr. Mehta will succeed Prof. Rudrangshu Mukherjee, who is the founding Vice-Chancellor of the university. Prof. Mukherjee will be the university's next Chancellor with the completion of Prof. Andre Beteille’s three-year term. 
 
"Prof. Mukherjee has played a crucial role as Ashoka’s first Vice Chancellor, and has led the achievement of a significant number of milestones since his appointment in 2014. As the University’s Founding Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Mukherjee’s guidance has been instrumental in steering the University through its formative years. In particular, he led from the front in teaching a full course load along with his day-to-day responsibilities as Vice Chancellor. He will continue this tradition as Chancellor of Ashoka University," the announcement said.
 
"Under Prof. Beteille and Prof. Mukherjee’s leadership, the University has had remarkable successes in its early years. The University has grown from a small pioneering institution to an established and highly reputed university. Going forward, under the combined leadership of Chancellor Rudrangshu Mukherjee and Vice Chancellor Pratap Bhanu Mehta, Ashoka University aspires to provide its students the highest quality liberal arts education and achieve its goal of becoming India’s best university," it added.
 
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Anthony Lianzuala takes over as Controller General of Accounts

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Mr. Anthony Lianzuala took over as the new Controller General of Accounts (CGA) here today.
 
An officer of the 1982 batch of Indian Civil Accounts Service (ICAS), Mr. Lianzuala is the first person from the North-Eastern region to hold the position, an official press release said.
 
Mr Lianzuala, a graduate from the Hindu College of Delhi University, has vast and rich experience in the government both at the Centre and the State levels. He has previously held senior positions in the Central Board of Direct Taxes(CBDT), Ministry of Information & Broadcasting, Ministry of Consumer Affairs, Food & Public Distribution, Ministry of Commerce and Ministry of Rural Development. 
 
Mr Lianzuala was the first Director of the training institute in the field of Public Financial Management and Accounting in the North-East named INGAF-NER, based in Aizawl, Mizoram. He is also credited for his IT initiatives in the North-Eastern Region. He was instrumental in computerising the functions of the State Treasuries of Mizoram. He has also served in Mizoram as Secretary in various departments including Agricultural Marketing, Border Trade and Relief & Rehabilitation. 
 
He was also selected as Managing Director of North-Eastern Agricultural Marketing Corporation (NERAMAC), a public sector undertaking, based in Guwahati. 
 
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Anant Narayan Nanda appointed Secretary, Department of Posts

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The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) has approved the appointment of Mr. Anant Narayan Nanda as Secretary, Department of Posts.
 
An official press release said here today that Mr. Nanda, an officer of the 1982 batch of the Indian Postal Service (IPoS), will succeed Mr. Boyapati Venkat Sudhakar, IPoS (1981).
 
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Ashish Nanda steps aside as Director of IIM Ahmedabad

Ashish Nanda
Ashish Nanda
Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIMA) Director Ashish Nanda today announced that he would step aside from his position with effect from September 1, 2017, citing personal reasons.
 
"Professionally, I have enjoyed the experience immensely and I have learned a lot. However, personally, living a long distance from my wife and son has been a challenge," Prof. Nanda said in a letter to all members of the IIMA community.
 
"When I joined, I had committed to serving at most one term. On September 1, it will be four years, to the day, since I took charge. It is a good time to step aside and to hand over the responsibility and honour of leading the Institute to the next, fortunate person. I will hand over responsibilities of director at the end of that day," he said.
 
"These past three and a half years, I have woken up every day feeling fortunate to be working for an institution that has contributed tremendously to me. I feel privileged to have followed in the footsteps of people I greatly admire, to have had the opportunity to lead the Institute at a crucial time in its trajectory, and to have contributed to the best of my ability to its continuing success," he said.
 
"I believe we are at a point when there is alignment among various constituencies of the Institute as to the direction we ought to follow and considerable momentum along the path that we are following. We have a committed and enthusiastic chairman providing vision and guidance, a wise and engaged board, faculty that is productive and energized, staff that is loyal and devoted, brilliant and hardworking students, a diaspora of alumni committed to the Institute’s long term success, governmental support for operating autonomously to achieve our dreams, and industry that respects and values the Institute. This is as good a time as any for leadership transition at the Institute," he said.
 
Prof. Nanda said he had, thus, requested IIMA Chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla that he be allowed to step aside from the position of director, and he had acceded to the request.
 
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"Of course, my heart is always with IIMA. I am always available to help the Institute in any way that I can. And I will contribute to effect a smooth transition," he said.
 
"I am grateful to Mr. Naik, Mr. Patel, and Mr. Birla for their unstinted support and guidance, to the board members for their selfless contribution and prudent counsel, to the faculty for their dedication and effort, to the alumni for their avowed affection and engagement, to the staff for their fidelity and goodwill, and to the students for their dreams and their dedication. But I couldn’t have had this extraordinary adventure without the love of my wife, who, despite the distance we have lived apart, has been a partner with me in this journey every step of the way, the blessings of my parents, and the affection of my son," he added.
 
Prof Nanda was the Robert Braucher Professor of Practice at Harvard Law School, before taking up his present assignment.
 
He is an alumnus of the 1983 batch of IIMA. He is a gold medalist from both Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi and from IIMA. He completed his M.A. in Economics and Ph.D. from Harvard University and has taught courses in Harvard Business School and Harvard Law School. 
 
He was faculty director of Executive Education and research director at Program on the Legal Profession at Harvard Law School. 
 
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Rajiv Rai Bhatnagar appointed as DG, Central Reserve Police Force

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The Government has appointed Mr. Rajiv Rai Bhatnagar, IPS (UP:1983), Director General, Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB), as the new Director General of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF).
 
The appointment will be with effect from the date of joining the post and up to December 31, 2019, the date of his superannuation or till further orders, whichever is earlier. 
 
The Government has also appointed Mr. R. K. Pachnanda, IPS (WB:1983), Director General, National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) to the post of Director General, Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP).
 
He will succeed Mr. Krishna Choudhary, IPS (BH:1979), DG, ITBP due to retire on superannuation on June 30, 2017.
 
The appointment will be effective from the date of joining the post and up to October 31, 2018 or till further orders, whichever is earlier, an official press release added.
 
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Cabinet Secretary Pradeep Kumar Sinha given one year's extension in service

Pradeep Kumar Sinha
Pradeep Kumar Sinha
The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) has approved extension in service to Mr. Pradeep Kumar Sinha, IAS (UP:1977) as Cabinet Secretary for a further period of one year beyond June 12, 2017.
 
Mr. Sinha had assumed charge as Cabinet Secretary on June 13, 2015 for a two-year term.
 
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B.N.Mohapatra takes over as Financial Commissioner of Railways

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Mr. B. N. Mohapatra has been appointed as the new Financial Commissioner (FC) (Railways) and ex-officio Secretary to the Government of India and has taken over the charge yesterday.
 
Prior to this posting, Mr. Mohapatra was posted as Additional Member, Finance in the Railway Board since November 1, 2016.
 
An officer of Indian Railway Accounts Service (IRAS) of the 1980 batch, Mr. Mohapatra has a Master's degree in Political Science and a Bachelor's in Law.
 
During his career, Mr. Mohapatra has held positions such as Divisional Railway Manager, Tinsukhia in North-East Frontier Railway (NRF) and as Assistant General Manager in East Coast Railway. In the Railway Board, he has worked in various directorates like Pay Commission, Establishment, Expenditure and Accounts as Executive Director and Advisor, an official press release added.
 
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