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Santosh Jha Assumes Role As India’s New Envoy To Sri Lanka

 

India’s diplomatic ties with Sri Lanka have taken a new turn with the appointment of Santosh Jha as the country’s new High Commissioner. In a significant ceremony held in Colombo on Friday, Jha officially assumed charge and presented his credentials to President Ranil Wickremesinghe.

This development comes as Jha takes over the role from Gopal Baglay, who has been appointed as the next High Commissioner of India to Australia.

Distinguished Diplomatic Career

  • Santosh Jha brings with him a wealth of diplomatic experience, having served in various key positions throughout his career.
  • Prior to his assignment in Colombo, Jha held the prestigious position of India’s Ambassador to the European Union, Belgium & Luxembourg.
  • His diplomatic journey also included a term as the Ambassador of India to Uzbekistan from 2019 to 2020 and a pivotal role as the Deputy Chief of Mission at the Indian Embassy in Washington DC from 2017 to 2019.
  • Within the Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi, Jha served as the head of the Division for Human Resources and Management Affairs, the Division for Relations with Western Europe and the European Union, and the Policy Planning Division.
  • Such diverse roles equipped him with a comprehensive understanding of diplomatic intricacies and international relations.

Crucial Stint in Colombo

  • Jha has previously served in Sri Lanka, holding the position of Counsellor at the High Commission from 2007 to 2010, where he played a crucial role in handling matters related to commercial and economic affairs.
  • The release accompanying his appointment highlighted his pivotal role during this period in building the architecture of India-Sri Lanka development cooperation.

Architect of India-Sri Lanka Development Cooperation

  • The release specifically emphasized Jha’s instrumental role in shaping the framework of India-Sri Lanka development cooperation during his earlier tenure in Colombo.
  • This underscores his commitment to fostering strong bilateral ties and advancing shared developmental goals between the two nations.
  • His past experience in Sri Lanka positions him well to navigate the complexities of the region and contribute to the continued strengthening of India’s relationship with its neighbor.

Summary

  • New High Commissioner: Santosh Jha takes charge as India’s High Commissioner to Sri Lanka, succeeding Gopal Baglay.
  • Diplomatic Career: Jha, a seasoned diplomat, held key positions, including Ambassador to the EU and Deputy Chief of Mission in Washington DC.
  • Previous Sri Lanka Stint: Jha served as a Counsellor in Colombo from 2007-2010, contributing significantly to commercial and economic matters.
  • Development Cooperation Architect: Acknowledged for his pivotal role, Jha shaped the foundation of India-Sri Lanka development cooperation during his earlier tenure.
  • Strategic Focus: Jha is expected to leverage his experience to strengthen bilateral ties, with a key emphasis on development cooperation and economic relations.
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