News » US-India relations » New Indian ambassador to US Harsh Vardhan Shringla to present credentials on January 11

New Indian ambassador to US Harsh Vardhan Shringla to present credentials on January 11

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Harsh Vardhan Shringla
Harsh Vardhan Shringla; photo credit: Ministry of External Affairs, India

Shringla, who succeeds Navtej Sarna, will arrive on January 9, the American Bazaar has learned.

Notwithstanding President Trump’s recent jibes against Prime Minister Narendra Modi over Afghanistan and trade, US-India relations continue to be on a positive trajectory — at least at the diplomatic level.

A case in point is the swift credentials presentation being arranged for the newly appointed Indian Ambassador to the United States Harsh Vardhan Shringla, who will get to present his letter of credence — which marks the official beginning of an ambassador’s tenure — within 48 hours of his arrival.

In a city where more than 150 countries have diplomatic missions, such fast-tracking is rare.

Shringla will arrive in Washington, DC, on January 9 and present his credentials two days later, on Friday, the American Bazaar has learned.

It usually takes newly appointed ambassadors to the United States some time before they can present their credentials. But, according to a source in New Delhi, things are moving pretty swiftly for Shringla.

RELATED: Harsh Vardhan Shringla is new Indian Ambassador to United States (December 20, 2018)

It is not clear whether Shringla would be presenting the credentials on January 11 to the Department of State or to the White House.

Diplomatic credentials or a letter of credence is a letter that formally appoints a diplomat as the ambassador to another country. The letter is addressed from one head of state to another. The letter is presented by the ambassador to the receiving head of state in a formal ceremony. The ceremony further marks the beginning of the official period of ambassadorship.

It is a common practice for ambassadors to initially present temporary credentials to the Department of State once they arrive in host countries before eventually presenting it to the head of state.

Shringla will be succeeding Navtej Sarna, who retired on December 31, after a two-year tenure in the United States.

Shringla, a 1984 batch Indian Foreign Service diplomat, had been serving as the Indian High Commissioner to Bangladesh. His new appointment was announced late last month by India’s Ministry of External Affairs.

RELATED: A list of Indian ambassadors to the United States

Shringla, who is from Darjeeling in the Indian state of West Bengal, has held a number of key diplomatic positions during his career spanning 30 years.

He has held positions in Paris, Hanoi, Durban and Tel Aviv, as well as at the ministry in Delhi. He has also served as the counselor in the Permanent Mission of India to the United Nations, New York.

Shringla is an alumnus of the St Stephen’s College in Delhi University. He holds the distinction of being one of the youngest ever to be appointed as counsel general of India at the age of 27. The new ambassador is proficient in French, Nepalese and Vietnamese. He and his wife, Hemal Store, have a son.

(This story has been updated.)


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