statesman news service
New Delhi, 1 October
Mr Ranjan Mathai, who retired as foreign secretary two months back, has been appointed as the next High Commissioner to Britain. He will succeed Mr Jaimini Bhagwati.
According to a statement issued by the Ministry of External Affairs, Mr Mathai is expected to take up his assignment shortly.
There are various high level changes taking place in the external affairs ministry headquarters and Indian missions across the
world. Mr Mathai&’s appointment is the latest in the series.
It was announced lately that Mr Subrahmanyam Jaishankar, India’s ambassador to China, has been appointed as the next Ambassador to the United States and his position in Beijing will be taken over by Mr Ashok K Kantha.
Both Mr Jaishankar and Mr Kantha are 1977-batch Indian Foreign Service (IFS) officers.
Now that the visit of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to the USA is over, Mr Jaishankar is expected to take charge shortly.
He will be replacing Ms Nirupama Rao, who served as India&’s ambassador to the USA after retiring as foreign secretary.
Sources said Ms Rao had tried for an extension but since Mr Jaishankar lost out in the race to become the foreign secretary, it was
decided to send him
as ambassador to Washington.
Prime Minister Manmohan Singh is expected to travel to China later this month. Mr Kantha is likely to take up his new charge after the PM&’s visit.
Mr Kantha previously served as high commissioner to Colombo and is currently Secretary (East) in the headquarters.
Another high profile position that has become vacant is that of the Chief of Protocol. Ms Ruchira Kamboj who served as Chief of Protocol till recently has now been posted to UNESCO, Paris.
Sources said there are many contenders for the position of CoP as it is considered a high profile posting and the guessing game is on as to who will succeed Ms Kamboj.