Mr. Yashvardhan Kumar Sinha is appointed as the new Indian High Commissioner at its London office. Sinha is a seasoned diplomat and during a career spanning over 35 years, he has handled several important assignments at the Ministry of External Affairs, New Delhi and in Indian diplomatic missions in South Asia, the Middle East, Europe, South Americaand the Permanent Mission of India at the United Nations in New York.
Born on October 4, 1958 in an eminent family from Bihar, he began his schooling in Chesham (UK) and finished at St. Michael’s High School, Patna. He graduated with Honours in History from St. Stephen’s College, Delhi and also did his Masters in History from Delhi University. He joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1981. He was a member of the Secretariat of the Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) Summit, held in New Delhi in 1983 and the CHOGM Summit held the same year. He has a diploma in Arabic from the AmericanUniversity, Cairo. He is married to Girija, and they have two sons: Ambuj and Vinayak.
Mr Sinha holds the rank of Secretary to the Government of India. Before coming to the UK, he was High Commissioner of India to Sri Lanka. Prior to this, he was Additional Secretary and headed the important Pakistan-Afghanistan-Iran Division at the Ministry of External Affairs, New Delhi for almost four years. He was Ambassador of India toVenezuela from January 2007 to August 2009 and Consul General of India in Dubai from August 2003 to December 2006.
Earlier, he served as Minister and Deputy Chief of Mission at the Indian Embassy in Abu Dhabi (UAE) from March 2002 to July 2003. Mr. Sinha was Counsellor at the Permanent Mission of India, United Nations,New York from 1998 to 2002 where he represented India in the Fourth Committee of the UN General Assembly handling Peace Keeping, Decolonisation, Information etc. He also handled the issue of UN Security Council reforms and was a member of the Open Ended Working Group on UN Security Council Reforms and the Committee on Palestine.
He served as Counsellor and head of the Political Section in the Indian High Commission in Islamabad from 1995 to 1998. He was Deputy Secretary (Pakistan) in the Ministry of External Affairs from 1992 to 1995. Before that he served as First Secretary, heading the Economic and Commercial Wing in the Embassy of India, Rome from 1989 to 1992. During this period, he also officiated as Consul General of India in Milan in 1990 for a brief period. He served as First Secretary in the Embassy of India, Riyadh from 1985 to 1988 and also worked in the Indian Embassy in Cairo from 1983 to 1985.
Mr. Sinha has represented India at numerous international and regional conferences and meetings. Apart from his stint in the Permanent Mission of India to the UN in New York, he was the alternate representative of India to UNIDROIT during his posting at the Embassy of India in Rome. He participated in the London Conference on Afghanistan (January 2010); Bonn II Conference on Afghanistan (December 2011); Tokyo Conference on Afghanistan (July 2012) and ‘Heart of Asia’ Ministerial Conferences on Afghanistan at Istanbul(November 2011), Kabul (June 2012) and Almaty (April 2013).
He also led the Indian delegation for the first and second India-US-Afghanistan trilateral consultations in New York (September 2012) and Delhi (February 2013) respectively. He was invited by the Council of Foreign Relations, New York to speak on “The Role of the Region in Afghanistan’s 2014 Transition” alongwith the Deputy Foreign Minister ofAfghanistan in September 2012. In addition, he has participated in various bilateral, regional and multilateral talks, conferences and seminars, including at the South Asia Conferences organized by the International Institute of Strategic Studies (IISS) at Muscat (Oman) in 2009 and 2012.