About Mr V Ramachandran

V Ramachandran was born in Tamil Nadu on 21 March 1931. He obtained his Master's degree in Arts (MA) and Sciences (MSc) from the University of Madras before securing a Master's degree in Public Administration from Harvard University. He entered the Indian Administrative Service in 1954 to start a 35-year-long Civil Service which lasted till 1989, during which time he held several positions of note in the Central and State administrations. After the initial postings, he served as a District Collector, Finance Secretary and the Chairman of public sector undertakings such as Kerala State Electricity Board, Kerala State Industrial Development Corporation, prior to his posting as the Chief Secretary of the state, a post he held till his retirement in 1989. In between, he also had two stints outside Kerala cadre; the first as a Joint Secretary at the Prime Minister's secretariat during the tenures of Indira Gandhi and Morarji Desai from 1972 to 1978, with the responsibility of Science and Technology and Economic Affairs and the second as the Vice-Chairman of the United Nations Committee on Right to Development from 1980 to 1984.

After his retirement from Civil Service, Ramachandran was again called to Government service in 1991 as the Advisor to the Governor of Tamil Nadu under President's rule. Thereafter, the Government of Kerala invited him to accept the position of the Vice-Chairman of Kerala State Planning Board, a post holding the rank of a cabinet minister; he had earlier served the Board as a member during his Civil Service years. He held the post for two non-concurrent five year terms. It was during this period, he drafted a report on democratic decentralisation which was reported to have earned him the moniker, 'father of democratic decentralisation' in India. He chaired an Expert Group on Participatory Planning which deliberated on the concept of Panchayati Raj and proposed measures which were later taken up by the state as well as other regions in India. While serving as the Vice-Chair of the Planning Board during his first term, he also served as the Director of Rajiv Gandhi Foundation (1992–1996) and as a member of its Task Force on Panchayati Raj.    Read More