(Profile) UPSC Member: Mrs. Shashi Uban Tripathi

Mrs. Shashi Uban Tripathi

Senior Cambridge, Delhi Public School, Mathura Road, New Delhi; B.A. (English – Hons); M.A. (English), Patna University. She is a Gold- Medalist of Patna University having topped at the Graduate and Postgraduate levels.

Joined Indian Foreign Service in 1970. During her 37 years of diplomatic career, she handled varied and important assignments in a number of countries. Her first posting abroad was as Second-Secretary and later as First-Secretary (Political) in the Embassy of India, Kathmandu, Nepal from 1974-77. She served as First Secretary (Information) in the Embassy of India, Moscow, USSR from 1977-80 where, inter-alia, she edited a popular magazine called ‘INDIA’ in Russian. From Moscow, she was posted as First- Secretary (Head of Chancery) and incharge of Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation (ITEC) Programme in the Embassy of India, Kabul, Afghanistan where during the critical years of 1980-83 in the background of internal strife, she assisted in the reconstruction efforts through Indian experts deputed to that country.

She took over as Deputy Director General of Indian Council of Cultural Relations (ICCR), New Delhi in 1983 – an autonomous body funded by the Ministry of External Affairs, responsible for projecting India’s rich cultural heritage abroad. In the wake of the tragic Air India Kanishka crash, a special post of Counselor (Information, Publicity and Spokesperson) was created in the High Commission of India, Ottawa, Canada to which, she was deputed from 1985-88. After a three year eventful tenure in Canada, she moved back to the neighbourhood as Deputy Consul General in the Consulate General of India, Karachi, Pakistan from 1988-92, where she put in place systems to facilitate people-to-people exchanges. From 1992-94, she served as Minister and then Deputy Chief of Mission (Political & Economic Affairs) in the Embassy of India, Bonn, Germany.

For the next ten years, she served as Head of Mission – first as Ambassador of India, Warsaw, Poland in 1994-97, where she was pivotal in reviving and rejuvenating India’s relations with Poland at a time when Central European countries were becoming increasingly Eurocentric and subsequently as High Commissioner of India in Harare, Zimbabwe (1997-98). She helped prominent Indian PSUs to get a foothold in niche markets in that once prosperous African country. Her tenure as Consul General of India in New York, USA (1988-02) was marked by the entry of major Indian corporate players on the New York Stock Exchange, as also the change in the perception of India as a rising economic force. During the tragic terrorist attack of 9/11, she set up a twenty-four hour ‘Crisis Centre’ at the Consulate General of India to render disaster relief whose work was appreciated by the local as well as Indian Media and the Hon’ble Parliament. She was High Commissioner for India in Ottawa, Canada from 2002-04. Her last assignment was as Secretary (West), Ministry of External Affairs, where she was responsible for overseeing India’s relations with Europe, Africa and Latin America.

She has been a sought-after speaker and has delivered speeches on foreign affairs and Indian culture at various foreign universities. She joined as Member, Union Public Service Commission in May, 2007.