Syed Akbaruddin, who was the chief coordinator of the India-Africa Forum Summit (IAFS) held here last month, has been appointed as the new permanent representative of India to the United Nations in New York, it was announced on Monday.
“Syed Akbaruddin, currently additional secretary in the ministry, has been appointed as the next ambassador/permanent representative of India to the United Nations in New York,” an official statement said.
Akbaruddin will be replacing Asoke Kumar Mukherjee, who is soon to retire.
After completing a very successful term as the external affairs ministry spokesperson in April this year, Akbaruddin was slated to go to Geneva as India’s permanent representative to the UN offices there.
However, Prime Minister Narendra Modi handpicked Akbaruddin to be the chief coordinator of the IAFS, a mega event that was attended by all the 54 countries of Africa.
The event went off smoothly with all visiting dignitaries praising the way it was organised.
A 1985 batch IFS officer, Akbaruddin is credited with bringing a whiff of fresh air into the Ministry’s External Publicity division during his three-and-half year tenure as the spokesperson.
As India’s Permanent Representative to the global body in New York, Akbaruddin’s main task would be to push for India’s bid to gain permanent membership of the UN Security Council as well as to strongly advocate its position on key issues.
(With inputs from IANS and PTI)