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Foreign secretary Sujatha Singh’s tenure curtailed; Jaishankar appointed as the new foreign secretary

jaishankarNew Delhi: The Modi government Wednesday replacing incumbent Sujatha Singh six months before her term was to end, appointed India’s envoy in the US, S. Jaishankar, as the new foreign secretary.

“S.Jaishankar, an Indian Foreign Service officer of 1977 batch, has been appointed as the new foreign secretary for a period of two years,” said the appointments committee in a note that was put up on the department of personnel and training.

Jaishakar hails from an illustrious family of civil servants and is the son of Indian foreign policy doyen K. Subhramanyam. He was one of the key officials who negotiated the nuclear deal with the US as joint secretary (Americas) from 2004 to 2007 in the ministry of external affairs. He was previously the envoy to China before moving as envoy to the US.

Mean while the sudden appointment has echoes of the sudden replacement of India’s then foreign secretary A.P. Venkateswaran by then Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi in January 1987.

Sujatha had assumed office in August 2013 and was due to retire in August this year.

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