Civil servant, management guru, housing expert, innovator, writer, orator – many roles can be attributed to retired IAS officer CV Ananda Bose, who was appointed the new West Bengal governor on Thursday. But his role as a housing expert will be his lasting legacy as he is the brainchild behind India’s promise to provide affordable housing for all by 2022.
Bose, who was serving as adviser to the Meghalaya governor, was the chairperson of the working group that prepared the development agenda for Prime Minister Narendra Modi. His concept of “affordable housing for all Indians” was adopted by the prime minister for implementation throughout the country, who has described him as “Man of Ideas”, and by former PM Dr Manmohan Singh as an “inspired civil servant”.
The former bureaucrat is an alumnus of the prestigious BITS Pilani and retired as the chief secretary to the Indian government. He has worked as university vice-chancellor, principal secretary to chief minister of Kerala, chairman of central public sector undertaking Central Warehousing Corporation (CWC) and district collector, according to his website.
His website states that Bose joined the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) in 1977, following which he made a name for himself by introducing innovations in good governance for a robust delivery of public services. He holds a PhD in habitat and environment, and is the chairperson of the Habitat Alliance in a consultative status with the UN.
Bose is a recipient of the prestigious Jawaharlal Nehru Fellowship, and the first ever Fellow of the Lal Bahadur
Shastri National Academy of Administration Mussoorie, which trains the top civil servants.
As for his expertise on housing and his contribution to India’s national policy, Bose founded the Nirmithi Kendra (Building Centre) founded by him as District Collector of Kollam in 1985 to provide cost effective and environment friendly houses to the people, has emerged into a national network and become part of the national housing policy. This unique initiative in affordable housing is seen as a trigger for the Prime Minister’s decision to provide affordable houses for all by 2022. Bose had the opportunity to meet and submit the proposal to Sri. Narendra Modi on 4 March 2014.
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