Deepak Bhojwani

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Ambassador Deepak Bhojwani.
Ambassador Deepak Bhojwani.

Ambassador Deepak Bhojwani joined the Indian Foreign Service(IFS) in 1978 as a trained Diplomat. Widely regarded by his Ministry as an expert on Latin American-Indian affairs he has served as Ambassador in seven Latin American countries, being resident Ambassador in Colombia, Venezuela[1] and Cuba, as well as serving as Consul General in São Paulo, Brazil.[2]  In 1994 he was handpicked by Indian Prime Minister Narasimha Rao to serve as his Private Secretary and served under the Prime Minister during India´s economic reform period Chawla, Prabhu where the country opened its economy to foreign Investors and relaxed regulation. The Ambassador has also served his country as a Diplomat in the Indian Embassies of Indonesia, Malaysia, Spain and the Czech Republic as a lower level functionary.

Experience[edit]

During his professional career, Ambassador Deepak Bhojwani has advised and guided several state-owned and private Indian companies looking to enter the Latin American Market. Such companies include ONGC Videsh Limited, Bajaj Auto and Praj Industries amongst others.[3]  In addition, he has worked alongside several Latin American leaders in areas ranging from bilateral cooperation to formation of foreign policy, some of whom still remain in power such as Venezuela´s Hugo Chávez, Ecuador´s Rafael Correa, the Dominican Republic´s Leonel Fernandez and Colombia´s current President Juan Manuel Santos.

The Ambassador has played a vital role in strengthening the relationship between India and Latin America where he has served for over a decade, from 2000 till 2012. His experience in Latin America made him somewhat of an expert on the region within the Indian Foreign Service. He has worked extensively on projects of political, economic, commercial and social nature in Brazil, Venezuela, Colombia, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Cuba, The Dominican Republic and Haiti[4] in addition to collaborating on projects with other countries in and around the region. Among these was the opening of a Center for Information Technology in the Dominican Republic in 2011, financed by the Indian Government.[5]

Ambassador Bhojwani also served as a diplomat performing political, economic, commercial, cultural, consular, and administrative functions in Indian diplomatic Missions in Spain, Indonesia, Malaysia, and the Czech Republic, before serving in Latin America, in the course of his career, from which he retired on 31 January 2012. He also represented his country and government on various delegations in multilateral and bilateral discussions, conferences, etc.

He served in different capacities in New Delhi, the capital of India. His most distinguished designation was Private Secretary to the Prime Minister of India, Mr P.V.Narasimha Rao, from May 1994 till May 1996. Deepak Bhojwani was hand-picked by Prime Minister Rao for his diplomatic and political skills, to serve as a liaison with government departments and functionaries, to oversee appointments and schedules as well as important files relating to key decisions of the government of the day, to accompany the Prime Minister on visits abroad and during high level visits by international dignitaries and delegations to India. This provided an opportunity for him to interact with important personalities and put him at the heart on Indian diplomacy and decision making during the crucial period of India's economic reform and transformation into a global power.

Earlier Deepak Bhojwani served as Private Secretary in the office of Mr K. R. Narayanan, when the latter was Minister of State for External Affairs in the government of India, from October 1985 till September 1986, and then Minister of State for Science and Technology, from September 1986 till March 1988. He also served in the Ministry of External Affairs of the government of India from August 1982 till September 1985, April 1988 till July 1990, and July 1996 till July 1997, in the Departments of Administration, Americas, and West Asia and North Africa, giving him a breadth of experience in the working of the Ministry of External Affairs and Indian diplomacy.

Early life[edit]

Deepak Bhojwani was born on the 26th of January 1952 in the city of Mumbai to Jeweller Kishinchand Bhojwani. He grew up in the Churchgate area of South Mumbai and completed his primary education at St. Xavier´s Boys Academy in Mumbai. He went on to earn a Bachelors Degree in Commerce & Economics in 1976 and later a Bachelors Degree in Law (with a Specialization in International Law) in 1979, from the University of Mumbai. After his secondary education he went to work in his father´s jewellery business but his desire to serve his community and country led him to seek a post in the Indian Civil Service. He excelled in the competitive entrance exam in 1977, ranking 13th all-India, and joined the Indian Foreign Service in July 1978 as an IFS-A officer, specialized in the French Language. His training included periods in rural India, border areas, and specialised institutions all over India. His first foreign post was in the Embassy of India in Madrid, where he learned Spanish and acquired his first glimpse of Latin culture.

Family[edit]

Deepak Bhojwani is married to Shyella Bhojwani, and together they have three children, Samir, Sahir and Mihir. His family has accompanied him on all Diplomatic posts during his tenure as a diplomat. Two of his children are currently living in Latin America.

Publications[edit]

In addition to his diplomatic duties, Ambassador Deepak Bhojwani published several papers and conducted a host of seminars on Latin America-India relations in English and Spanish. These include:

Where is India Heading in the 21st Century? Keynote Address at the University of Los Andes, Mérida, Venezuela, June 2006.

Democracy and Development in India in the Context of Her Relations with Latin America. Papeles de la India Vol. 37, No.1, 2008- Indian Council for Cultural Relations.

Latin America- Energizing India. Published in Economic Diplomacy by the think tank CUTS New Delhi, India, 2010.

Author of India: Un Socio en el Sur (India: A Partner in the South), Digital Presentation on the Indian Economy and its relationship with Latin America, exhibited in Venezuela, Colombia, Cuba and other countries, and at a special seminar at the Fundación Global para la Democracia y Desarrollo, FUNGLODE, Dominican Republic, May 2011.

He has been interviewed extensively in the Indian and Latin American media, mainly on relations between India and the different countries of the region.

Interests[edit]

The Ambassador is a dedicated practitioner of Yoga. He is also a keen golfer. He speaks English, Hindi, Sindhi, Spanish, French and Portuguese.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "India respalda proceso de cambios en Venezuela". Venezolana de Television. Algunos derechos Reservados. 9 December 2004. Retrieved 27 January 2012. 
  2. ^ ":: Consulado Geral da Índia ::". Indiaconsulate.org.br. Retrieved 2012-02-08. 
  3. ^ Business Wire (2011-07-27). "Praj recibe un contrato por 22 millones de dólares para construir una planta de etanol en Colombia". Business Wire. Retrieved 2012-02-08. 
  4. ^ "Indian presence in Haiti | Embassy of India". Indembassyhavana.org. 2011-04-20. Retrieved 2012-02-08. 
  5. ^ "Relaciones India - República Dominicana | Embassy of India". Indembassyhavana.org. Retrieved 2012-02-08.