New Delhi: India’s new Foreign Secretary S. Jaishankar took over as Foreign Secretary with hopes to revitalise the foreign office and implement some out of the box ideas.
The decision to appoint S. Jaishankar as the new Foreign Secretary stems from the desire of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi to appoint doers in prime jobs.
Newsmobile had first broken this story in December 2014 that the Prime Minister was considering to appoint Jaishankar as the new Foreign Secretary.
Jaishankar was originally tipped to be the foreign policy advisor as Modi realised that Sujatha Singh, an appointee of the UPA government, was not upto speed with the style of functioning that he wanted.
Modi felt that Jaishankar who was the prime mover behind the transformation of the relationship with the US, and the successful visit of Modi to the US, had to be rewarded.
S. Jaishankar who took over as Foreign Secretary said,”My priorities are the governmentâ€™s priorities this is a big responsibility, and Iâ€™m very honoured to be assigned these responsibilities.â€
He added that public diplomacy will be one of his key priorities “as media is an important part of our foreign policy projection.â€
The Prime Minister didn’t want to be seen as ejecting a woman officer so at multiple points he gave Singh a long rope but the final straw was a briefing in December where he was visibly miffed with Singh for being clueless.
Modi is believed to have told his aides to move papers to get Jaishankar in the job and it was decided to get him in the saddle a two days before he retires from the Indian foreign service. He will now get a two year tenure which will end in January 2017.
Jaishankar, an alumnus of the Jawaharlal Nehru University, is a realist diplomat who believes in out of the box ideas and his appointment comes at a crucial time when the PM is trying to experiment with new ideas in diplomacy.
After the visit of the US President Barack Obama, which came as a diplomatic coup, he will now plan the PM’s visit to China early this year which is being billed as another milestone for the Modi government before he completes a year in office.
Jaishankar who had earlier served as the envoy in the US, China and Singapore will bring a fresh new thinking in the foreign office which was required for the grand old ministry to keep pace with the PM’s big diplomatic vision.