New Delhi, Sep 16 (IANS) Veteran journalist Ajay Kumar Singh has been appointed as Press Secretary to the President of India.
A statement from the Ministry of Personnel said that Singh was being appointed the Press Secretary on “contract basis”, initially for a period of one year or until further orders, whichever is earlier.
The decision was taken after the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet approved his name for the post.
Singh is Editorial Director of Governance Now. Joined Governance Now as as Managing Editor in January 2014, he has close to 30 years of experience in print and electronic journalism with some of the leading media houses of the country.
At Governance Now, he was in charge of the English as well as Marathi editions.
Singh started his career with Times of India in 1985 from Lucknow. He has worked in ET and Telegraph. He joined the Pioneer in Delhi, and has also worked in Business Standard, Star News and NewsX.
He left as Editor of Governance Now for a brief while to join Firstpost as Executive Editor. However, he went back to Governance Now as Editorial Director.
He takes over from veteran journalist Ashok Malik, whose two year term came to an end last month.
Before Malik, it was IFS officer Venu Rajamony who was the Press Secretary to then President Pranab Mukherjee.
Before Rajamony, it was Indian Information Service A (IIS) officer Archana Datta and S.M. Khan, also an IIS officer. T.P. Seetharam, an IFS officer, held the post from December 1997- July 2000.
Ranjit Rae, also an IFS officer, held the charge from 1995-99. Present External Affairs Minister S. Jaishankar, an IFS officer, was Press Secretary and speechwriter for President Shankar Dayal Sharma from January 1994-November 1995.
Pawan K. Varma, also an IFS officer, who is currently adviser to Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, held the post between March 1992 and May 1993.
R.K. Bhatnagar held the post between 1991-92, and before that it was K Suryanarayana from March 1983 to August 1991. Earlier it was Abdul Hamid between June 1962 to March 1980, holding the post for the longest term of 18 years. R.L. Handa was the second Press Secretary, holding the post for 10 years between September 1952 to June 1962.
The first Press Secretary was Balkrishna, who was press attache from January 1950 to August 1952.