August 1st, 2009
High Commissioner relinquishes Charge
"It is now about 14 months since I came to London to head this Mission, which is one of our most important and probably the largest Mission in the world. I think I can safely say that the number of initiatives we have taken over the last year or so have finally begun to pay off. I have managed to travel extensively outside London, and wherever I have gone people have been willing spontaneously to express their satisfaction at the improved level of services, especially the consular services being provided by the High Commission. The opening of Visa Offices in different parts of the country has also helped towards this.
Those with whom we interacted, I can safely say without fear of contradiction, look upon us as an active and efficient High Commission, which represents its country with dignity and efficiency. It is with this feeling that I leave this post.
This is the last day of a long career, 38 years since I joined in July 1971. It has been a wonderful experience to have represented India in the Middle-East, in Europe, in Africa, in Asia and in America. It has been truly, I feel, more than fulfilling when I think of being able to have played a role as India's representative in the independence of Namibia, in the liberation of South Africa, and most recently in the dramatic developments and restoration of democracy in Nepal, our neighbouring country. I wish you all the very best and I look forward to keeping in touch."
Shiv Shankar Mukherjee given a warm reception on eve of his retirement
India's outgoing High Commissioner to Britain, Shiv Shankar Mukherjee was given a warm reception at the India House in London on July 31, on the eve of his retirement from the Foreign Service at the end of an illustrious diplomatic career.
The reception, organised by Deputy High Commissioner, Asoke Mukerji, was attended among others by leading NRI industrialist, Lord Swaraj Paul, NRI entrepreneur S. P. Hinduja, Chairman of the Hinduja Group, Lord Karan Bilimoria, Chairman of Cobra Beers, Lord Bagri, Virendra Sharma, Labour MP, Hardyal Luther, President of the India International Foundation and Balwant Kapur, President of the Indian Overseas Congress.
Though Mr. Mukherjee's tenure was brief - just over a year and two months - he endeared himself to the large Indian community in the U.K. and gave a fresh impetus to the India- U.K. bilateral relations. A career diplomat of 1971 IFS batch, Mr. Mukherjee has carried out a wide range of diplomatic assignments in Africa, Asia, Europe, the U.S. and at the Ministry of External Affairs in New Delhi.
He has served in Damascus, Brussels, Lusaka, Washington, Windhoek, Cairo and Pretoria.
Mr. Mukherjee has also been the spokesperson of the External Affairs Ministry and has served as the Director General of the Indian Council for Cultural Relations.
He also served as Ambassador in Nepal, and before that as High Commissioner to South Africa. He has also served as Ambassador in Egypt and High Commissioner to Namibia.
- H.S. Rao, PTI, London
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