Rajinder Khanna, former chief of India’s intelligence agency RAW, was Tuesday appointed as Deputy National Security Adviser (NSA).
The National Security Council, headed by Prime Minister Narendara Modi with National Security Adviser Ajit Doval as its Secretary, is the apex body on all internal and external security-related matters.
It is for the first time when both the NSA and Deputy NSA are from intelligence agency background.
Doval, a former Indian Police Service officer, retired as chief of Intelligence Bureau, country’s internal intelligence agency, in January 2005.
The post of Deputy NSA was lying vacant since Arvind Gupta, a former Indian Foreign Service (IFS) officer, completed his tenure in August last year. Gupta was in August 2014 appointed to the post.
Khanna, a 1978 batch Research and Analysis Wing Service (RAS) officer, has supervised several “counter-terrorism operations and is considered an expert on Pakistan and Islamic terrorism,” according to news agency PTI.
The Appointments Committee of the Cabinet headed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi approved the appointment of Khanna as Deputy NSA on re-employment and on contractual basis, an order issued by personnel ministry said, without mentioning his tenure.
Khanna is at present Officer on Special Duty (Neighbourhood Studies) in the National Security Council Secretariat.
Neighbourhood Studies prepares policy papers of neighbouring countries including Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Nepal.