ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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R Gopalkrishnan

R Gopalkrishnan, IAS, who passed away recently worked in the Prime Minister’s Office for many years and was “invisible” to the outside world though he was the passionate mission man behind many of the flagship programmes which the United Progressive Alliance government launched.

Gopal – as he was known among his friends – was an unusual bureaucrat known for his grass-roots mind that was coupled with a macro-level thinking for designing public programmes that would benefit the greatest good of the greatest number. When with the UNICEF in Madhya Pradesh (MP) I came in close contact with him during the 1990s as the principal think tank person of Digvijay Singh, the chief minister of Madhya Pradesh for 10 years. As collector of drought-prone Jhabua district in MP he created a lasting impact through watershed programmes and later on the chief minister launched the “Pani Rokho” programme to involve people to capture rainwater in the fields, in the schools, in the huts and dwelling houses in the urban and rural habitats across the state. So was the Shiksha Guarantee Programme for schoolchildren. The MP Human Development Report (HDR) set an example for many states. Only after MP brought out its HDR report did the Government of India bring out its own HDR report!

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