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Former bureaucrats at Ficci helm

BS Reporter/New Delhi 20 Oct 12 | 12:02 AM

The top administration of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (Ficci) has two former government bureaucrats at the helm.

After Arbind Prasad, a former advisor in the Planning Commission, joined the business chamber as director-general (DG), another former senior bureaucrat, A Didar Singh, has been appointed secretary-general. He used to be secretary at the ministry of overseas Indian affairs.

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He will fill the shoes of Rajiv Kumar, who after a stay of two years at Ficci decided to “go back to academics" in September. When spoken to, Singh declined to make any comment, saying he was yet to take charge. He would take over on November 1.

Earlier, chambers observers were expecting Prasad to replace Kumar. However, an official statement on Friday said he’d continue to support the secretary-general in his current responsibilities.

This is the second time in recent times that Ficci is seeing major changes in its brass. Kumar joined as DG in October 2010 and later took charge as secretary-general, when Amit Mitra left that charge to join West Bengal politics, becoming finance minister. The induction of Prasad as DG was being read in a similar way.

Ficci is the only apex business chamber to have two people at the top administrative level. The Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) and the Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (Assocham) have one of the two posts. Currently, Chandrajit Banerjee is director-general of CII and D S Rawat is secretary-general, Assocham.

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