Sircar is back as stand-in I&B secretary

04 Oct,2011

By A Correspondent

Mr Jawhar Sircar, Sectretary, Ministry of Culure has been asked to hold additional charge as Secretary, Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. The move was necessitated as Mr Raghu Menon retired as Secretary on September 30. The last time Sircar was asked to do the honours was when Ms Sushma Singh retired as I&B secretary in 2009.

Mr Sircar’s appointment was announced by way of a circular of the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions. Here’s what the announcement said: “The competent authority has approved the following additional charge arrangement with effect from 1.10.2011 for a period of three months or until further orders, whichever is earlier”.

Some info on Mr Sircar, courtesy the Ministry of Culture website: Mr Sircar is a student of Presidency College, Calcutta University and did his Honours in Political Science and obtained two Masters’ Degrees in Sociology and History.


He has been actively involved with many cultural and academic bodies, like the Asiatic Society, the Victoria Memorial, the Centre for Archaeological Studies and the Kolkata Museum of Modern Art. He has been associated with one of the largest and most successful Book Fairs of the world, that is, the Kolkata Book Fair, since its inception. From the late 1990s, he also took the lead in upgrading the annual Kolkata Film Festival to a remarkable and recognized event of international standards.


Mr Sircar has been engaged in serious research in social anthropology and was the Director of a field research project that covered 78 sites of ‘popular religion’ in six districts of Western Bengal. The present focus areas of his research are ‘the construction of identities’, the ‘deconstruction of religious phenomena’, folk religion, as also in popular culture and its interface with the semi-classical and classical forms He has published several articles and research papers on history, culture and society. His monograph on “The Construction of the Hindu Identity in Medieval Western Bengal : The Role of Popular Cults”, was well received in India and abroad.


Photograph: Ministry of Culture, Government of India

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