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Archana Ramasundaram: The First Woman Chief of SSB

February 3, 2016

Archana Ramasundaram

Archana Ramasundaram, currently the Special Director, National Crime Records Bureau, has been appointed as the Director General of Sashastra Seema Bal, a paramilitary force, entrusted with guarding the country’s frontiers with Nepal and Bhutan. She will retain this post till her superannuation on September 30, 2017 as per an order issued by Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT).

What makes her appointment all the more significant is that this is the first time that an Indian woman IPS officer has been appointed as the chief of paramilitary forces, proving that India is forging ahead into the future, not with the women in tow, but with some of them even leading the nation.

Who is Archana Ramasundaram?

  • She is a 1980-batch Tamil Nadu Cadre IPS officer.
  • At present she is serving as the head of the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB).
  • In the span of her more than a decade-long career, Archana has held prestigious positions like DGP and chairperson of Tamil Nadu Uniformed Services Recruitment Board.
  • Archana Ramasundaram has also served as the Deputy Inspector General of CBI.
  • Later, she went to hold the prestigious position of serving as the nation’s first woman Joint Director of the CBI.
  • While serving as the Joint Director at the CBI, she was handling cases pertaining to economic offences in the period between 1999 and 2006.
  • Archana Ramasundaram was in the news when she was appointed as the Additional Director of CBI.

Facts you need to know:

  • Her appointment as the Additional Director of CBI was challenged in the Supreme Court in 2014.
  • While the case was pending she was moved to NCRB as the chief.
  • The Centre later approved Archana’s appointment in February 2014.
  • However, the Tamil Nadu Government failed to send her relieving orders till May 2014.
  • Archana Ramasundaram informed the state chief secretary and assumed her position at the CBI.
  • But the state government suspended her on charge of desertion till she was finally transferred back to NCRB.

It is indeed heartening to see that female power is being recognized and celebrated across the bureaucratic ranks in India; be it the sole women contingent in the Republic Day Parade, the decision to induct women fighter pilots in the Indian Air Force for combat mission from 2017, or the prospect of seeing women Naval officers on warships in the near future. The appointment of a woman officer in the position of the chief of a paramilitary force for the first time in the country’s history is indeed a big leap for womankind.


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I am an Indian...Wedded to the Olive Green, I believe I belong to the Silent Ranks. I am extremely perturbed by the social issues concerning India. I in my own capacity am trying to bring about that change for a brighter tomorrow.