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Vijay Keshav Gokhale, considered an expert on China and East Asia, on Monday took charge as India’s foreign secretary, a post that he is set to hold for the the next two years. A 1981-batch Indian Foreign Service officer, Gokhale succeeds S Jaishankar. Gokhale served as secretary (economic relations) in the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) before taking up the new role. Gokhale had played a key role in negotiations to resolve the 73-day-long Doklam standoff between Indian and Chinese Armies last year.
He was India’s Ambassador to China from January 20, 2016, to October 21, 2017, before moving back to the MEA headquarters. His earlier diplomatic assignments include postings in Hong Kong, Hanoi and New York.