Two senior members of Prime Minister's Office (PMO), Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officers Rajeev Topno and Brajendra Navnit, have been appointed to the World Bank and the World Trade Organisation (WTO) respectively, the Centre informed on Thursday, June 4.

Rajeev Topno, who was Private Secretary to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has been appointed as Senior Advisor to the Executive Director (ED), World Bank in Washington, USA.

IAS officer Rajeev Topno

Brajendra Navnit, who served as a Joint Secretary in PMO, has been appointed as Ambassador and Permanent Representative of India to the WTO in Geneva, Switzerland.

The government has approved five other appointments to foreign posts for a period of three years in a bid to strengthen commercial links with countries like the US, China, the Philippines, Switzerland and Belgium amid the ongoing novel coronavirus pandemic.

Who is Rajeev Topno?

Hailing from Ranchi, Jharkhand, Topno is a 1996 batch Gujarat cadre IAS officer. He did his schooling from St. Thomas' Boys School, Khiderpore and graduated in Political Science and Sociology from St. Xavier's College, Kolkata.

In 1988, Topno joined Gujarat cadre as Assistant Collector at Bharuch and continued to work for the state government in different capacities at district and state levels before assuming charge as the Deputy Secretary at PMO in 2009.

The 46-year-old was appointed Private Secretary to the PM Modi on July 16, 2014. His new post of Senior Advisor to the ED, World Bank, is under the Department of Economic Affairs.

Who is Brajendra Navnit?

A 1999 batch Tamil Nadu cadre IAS officer, Navnit holds a bachelor's degree in Electrical Engineering. He served the state government from 1999 to 2008 and was on central government deputation thereafter.

IAS officer Brajendra Navnit
IAS officer Brajendra NavnitTwitter

The 45-year-old officer was serving as Director in PMO before being appointed as Joint Secretary in a massive mid-level reshuffle in 2016 and was given an extension in service last year.

Navnit's new post of Ambassador and Permanent Representative of India to the WTO comes under the Commerce Ministry.

Besides Topno and Navnit, the Centre also appointed IAS officers Ravi Kota, Lekhan Thakkar, H. Atheli, Anwar Hussain Shaik, and N. Ashok Kumar to different foreign posts.