The Union Government has reappointed retired Indian Police Service (IPS) officer Ajit Doval as National Security Adviser, according to him a Cabinet rank. He becomes the first NSA to get Cabinet status in the table of precedence. In his previous stint as an NSA, he had the status of Minister of State (MoS).
According to one official, the decision was taken since Mr. Dovalleads strategic dialogue with many countries and a cabinet rank will facilitate his interactions with the most senior officials. “A case in point is China, where there has been a mismatch between him and the Special Representative for boundary talks, who is normally a State councillor of Cabinet rank. China had raised discomfort about the mismatch,” the official said.
On Foreign Policy
According to another official, the need to bestow a Cabinet rank on Mr. Doval was felt in the wake of the appointment of former foreign secretary S. Jaishankar as the External Affairs Minister with cabinet status.
His appointment will be co-terminus with the term of the Prime Minister or until further orders, whichever is earlier,” an order issued on June 2 by P.K. Tripathi, Secretary, ACC said.
A 1968-batch IPS officer who retired as Director, Intelligence Bureau in 2005, Mr. Doval’s appointment is the first key posting announced by the Narendra Modi government after assuming office for a second term on May 30. The NSA’s post was first created in 1998 when Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the Prime Minister.