By OUR STAFF REPORTER
DEHRADUN,16 Nov: The World Book of Records, London, an international organisation that recognises monumental and extraordinary achievements of organisations and individuals, has recognised the notable contributions to society and humanity of Dr Rakesh Kumar, IAS (Retd) and presently the Chairman of Uttarakhand Public Service Commission. It also felicitated him for the same.
A Doctor of Medicine from AIIMS, Dr Kumar is a senior Indian civil servant (Indian Administrative Service, 1992 batch who had taken voluntary retirement some years ago) and a Global Health Leader from India with formal training in medicine, paediatrics & neonatology, public administration, leadership, and management. He has more than 30 years of leadership experience in public service in designing policies, implementing large inclusive development programmes, and leading state and national-level implementation and research portfolios at various government ministries and UN/international agencies in India.
Some of the major contributions of Dr Kumar are spearheading the establishment of six new All India Institutes of Medical Sciences (Medical & Research Institutes of National Eminence) across the country; his headship and direction in the final push to eradicate Polio by 2014, his historic leadership towards eliminating maternal and neonatal tetanus elimination by 2015 from India well before the designated time frame.
Dr Rakesh Kumar is the architect of the world’s largest and Government of India’s flagship immunisation programme – Mission Indradhanush. He also led the country through the complex process of introduction of six new vaccines (Rotavirus vaccine, Inactivated Polio vaccine, Measles-Rubella vaccine, Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine and Pentavalent vaccine, Adult JE). Another major contribution towards the health sector of India is the ideation and implementation electronic vaccine intelligence network (eVIN) that acted as a platform for the later successful CoWIN platform during the COVID 19 pandemic.
Dr Kumar has held important portfolios across Union and State Governments and international organisations which included assignments such as Joint Secretary, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, Senior Deputy Director-General of Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) and UN agencies (UNICEF and UNDP) including Chief Advisor to UNDP India. He also served for a while as Advisor to CM of Uttarakhand state and as Principal Advisor to Global Health Alliance, UK, and Advisory Board member of Urban Health 360, USA. He has recently been invited as senior scholar of global health at the School of Public Health, University of Memphis, USA.
Dr Kumar stated that he felt humbled and immensely honoured to receive the letter of appreciation and certificate from the prestigious World Book of Records, and would continue to work for the betterment of society through public health initiatives.