New Delhi, Jun 19 (PTI) President Ram Nath Kovind, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah were among the dignitaries who expressed anguish over the death of Department of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) Secretary Guruprasad Mohapatra on Saturday.
Mohapatra (59), a 1986 batch Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer of Gujarat cadre, died of COVID-19 related complications. He took over as the secretary, DPIIT in August 2019.
Kovind described Mohapatra as an outstanding bureaucrat whose work ethic and dedication to public service would remain worthy of emulation.
'Pained to learn about the untimely demise of Dr. Guruprasad Mohapatra, DPIIT Secretary. An outstanding bureaucrat, his work ethics and dedication to public service will remain worthy of emulation. My deepest condolences to his family, friends and colleagues,” Kovind tweeted.
Modi recalled his association with Mohapatra since his days as the chief minister of Gujarat, and said the bureaucrat had a great understanding of administrative issues and was known for his innovative zeal.
In a tweet, the prime minister said, 'Saddened by the demise of Dr. Guruprasad Mohapatra, DPIIT Secretary. I had worked with him extensively in Gujarat and at the Centre. He had a great understanding of administrative issues and was known for his innovative zeal. Condolences to his family and friends. Om Shanti.' Union Home Minister Amit Shah said Mohapatra was a very able and hardworking officer.
'Dr Guruprasad Mohapatra, DPIIT Secretary, was a very able and hardworking officer. His untimely demise is very saddening. My thoughts and prayers are with his bereaved family in this hour of grief. Om Shanti Shanti,' Shah tweeted.
Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba expressed deep shock over the 'untimely death' of Mohapatra, saying he will be remembered for his proactive approach and commitment to public service.
'Mohapatra was a dear colleague and an outstanding civil servant with exceptional qualities of strategic thinking and leadership,' Gauba said in a statement.
The cabinet secretary said as the head of one of the empowered groups, Mohapatra worked with utmost dedication in the ongoing fight against the Covid pandemic.
Even after Mohapatra had tested positive and was not well, he continued to work for long hours, monitoring the supply of oxygen across the country, under very challenging circumstances, Gauba said.
'He will be remembered for his proactive approach and his commitment to public service. His untimely death is an irreparable loss to all of us. I extend my deepest condolences to the members of his family,' he said.
Gujarat Chief Minister Vijay Rupani said the death of Mohapatra will be deeply felt and prayed for peace of the departed soul and strength to his family to bear the grief.
While serving as the Ahmedabad municipal commissioner, Mohapatra was appointed as the joint secretary in the Union commerce ministry on central deputation in September, 2014.
He also served as chairman of the Airports Authority of India (AAI) before taking over as the DPIIT secretary in August 2019.
In Gujarat, he served as the municipal commissioner of both Surat and Ahmedabad, and had been the managing director of state PSUs such as Gujarat Alkalies and Chemicals Ltd (GACL) and Gujarat Narmada Valley Fertilizers Company Ltd (GNFC).
As the AMC commissioner, Mohapatra was instrumental in developing the Sabarmati Riverfront, BRTS, Kankaria lakefront, among other projects.
Meanwhile, the central IAS association said it was shocked and saddened by the untimely demise of Mohapatra, an exemplary officer, who served the nation in important assignments.
'We are shocked and saddened by the untimely demise of Dr Guruprasad Mohapatra, IAS (GJ:86), Secretary @DIPPGOI. An exemplary officer, he served the nation in important assignments, both in Gujarat and Government of India. Such a loss to nation and society. Our condolences to the family,' it tweeted. PTI RHL