Executive Committee Chair and Members
CIMMYT INT is responsible for the overall management and oversight of BISA while an executive committee assists it in overseeing the activities of BISA.
Director General, CIMMYT, Chair BISA Executive Committee
Martin Kropff serves as the Director General of the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT, by its Spanish acronym) since June 2015. As DG of CIMMYT, a flagship CGIAR Center, Kropff leads center efforts to strengthen worldwide research on agriculture, food and the environment; areas that are central to addressing global challenges to food and nutrition security.
Before joining CIMMYT, Martin was Rector Magnificus and Vice Chairman of the Executive Board of Wageningen University and Research Center (Wageningen UR) in the Netherlands. He obtained his Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in biology at Utrecht University and a Ph.D. in agricultural and environmental sciences at Wageningen University, both cum laude. In 1984, he was appointed assistant professor at Wageningen University. From 1990 to 1995, Kropff was the systems agronomist at the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) in the Philippines, where he led an interdisciplinary program on the introduction of systems analysis and simulation in rice production research. Upon his return to the Netherlands in 1995, he served successively as Full Professor of Crop and Weed Ecology, Scientific Director of the University’s C.T. de Wit Graduate School for Production Ecology and Resource Conservation and Director General of the Plant Sciences Group. In 2005 he joined the Executive Board of Wageningen UR. Kropff played a key role in raising Wageningen UR’s profile worldwide. In 2013, he joined the CGIAR Consortium Board, where he worked to improve cohesion and develop a new CGIAR strategy.
Secretary DARE and Director General, ICAR and BISA Executive Committee
Trilochan Mohapatra joined as Secretary, Department of Agricultural Research & Education and Director General, Indian Council of Agricultural Research on February 22, 2016. Prior to this, he worked as the Director of the prestigious Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI), New Delhi and National Rice Research Institute (Formerly CRRI), Cuttack, Odisha. Dr Mohapatra has been a researcher & teacher for about 20 years at the National Research Centre on Plant Biotechnology, IARI, New Delhi, India. He has been working in the area of molecular genetics and genomics.
Mohapatra has over 145 research papers in national and international journals of repute. His research accomplishments include development of the first high yielding Basmati rice variety resistant to bacterial leaf blight through molecular marker assisted selection, and physical mapping and genome sequencing of rice and tomato. His contribution to science is reflected from high h-index and i10 index. He has the distinction of receiving several honours and awards in recognition of his research contributions including the INSA Young Scientist Award, Prof. LSS Kumar Memorial Award, NAAS-Tata Award, IARI BP Pal Award, DBT Bio-science Award and NASI-Reliance Industries Platinum Jubilee Award. He is a Fellow of the Indian National Science Academy, New Delhi, National Academy of Sciences-India, Allahabad and the National Academy of Agricultural Sciences, New Delhi.
Arun Kumar Joshi
South Asia Regional Director, CIMMYT and Managing Director, Borlaug Institute for South Asia (BISA)
A native of India, Dr. Joshi is working as South Asia Regional Director, CIMMYT and Managing Director, Borlaug Institute for South Asia (BISA). He is also Professor of Genetics and Plant Breeding at Banaras Hindu University. He has research and teaching experience of more than 30 years. Dr. Joshi is a fellow of the three most prestigious science academies in India – Indian National Science Academy, National Academy of Agriculture Sciences and National Academy of Science in India. In 2014, he was awarded Jeanie Borlaug Laube WIT Mentor Award from Borlaug Global Rust Initiative, Cornell, USA.
Dr. Joshi has contributed to the development and release of more than three dozen wheat varieties in India and south Asia and has handled largescale seed production programs. He has solved major issues with respect to spot blotch, terminal heat tolerance, drought tolerance and grain micronutrient (Zn and Fe) concentration in wheat. Also, he has made significant contribution on breeding wheat under conservation agriculture and for biofortified wheat. In addition, he has educated hundreds of farmers and researchers. His research findings are published in more than 130 refereed journal articles; 7 books, book chapters, and reviews; 77 symposia proceedings and has one patent.
Deputy Director General - Research & Partnerships, CIMMYT
Marianne Bänziger is Deputy Director General for Research and Partnerships at the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT).
As a crop physiologist with a PhD from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology ETH in Zurich (1992), Marianne Bänziger’s disciplinary expertise is in maize research targeted at stress environments. Prior to joining the position of DDG based in Mexico, Bänziger spent more than 10 years in Africa where she worked as Maize Breeder in Zimbabwe and later as Director of CIMMYT’s Global Maize Program based in Kenya. She initiated CIMMYT’s work on drought and low nitrogen breeding in South Africa, a program that has become one of CIMMYT’s flagships. Bänziger published over 60 articles and book chapters in peer-reviewed international journals and books, and contributed significantly to the development of drought tolerant maize varieties in Africa. In 2009, Bänziger became Deputy Director General – Research and Partnerships and has led the development of CIMMYT’s CRPs for maize and wheat.
Chief Secretary of Punjab
Sarvesh Kaushal is a 1982 batch Indian Administrative Services (IAS) Officer. He has a master’s in History. Kaushal was Deputy Commissioner of Hoshiarpur and Faridkot and served as Private Secretary to the Chief Minister from 1988 to 2002. He also served as Secretary, Information and Public Relations Department; Chairman, Pun Roads and Bridges Corporation; Secretary, Public Works Department; Secretary, Local Self Government Department; Chairman, Pun Water Supplies & Sewerage Board; Commissioner, Chief Secretary’s Office; Secretary, Planning Department; Secretary, Animal Husbandry, Diary Development & Fisheries Department; Secretary, Youth Affairs; Secretary, Medial Education & Research; Secretary, Education Department, Human Resource Development; Principal Secretary, School Education, Human Resource Development; Member Secretary, Women Development Corporation; Principal Secretary, Information Technology Department; Principal Secretary, Freedom Fighters Department; Principal Secretary, Irrigation Department and Chief Secretary, General Administration Department.
Anjani Kumar Singh
Chief Secretary of Bihar
Anjani Kumar Singh is a 1980 batch Indian Administrative Services (IAS) Officer. He holds a post graduate degree in Geography and MBA from Australia and has served the Government of Bihar in various positions such as Joint Secretary, Health and Family Welfare; Deputy Development Commissioner, Rural Development; District Magistrate, Land Revenue Management & District; Additional Secretary, Health and Family Welfare; Additional Secretary, Finance; Development Commissioner, Land Revenue Management and District; Director, Ministry of Human Resource Development; Director, Social Justice & Empowerment; Secretary, Parliamentary Affairs Department; Commissioner, Muzaffarpur; Secretary, Youth, Art & Culture Department; Principal Secretary, Human Resource Development; Principal Secretary, Culture, Sports and Youth Affairs Department; Principal Secretary, Agriculture Development and Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister.
Chhabilendra Roul is an IAS officer of 1985 batch belonging to the Punjab cadre. Chabilendra is an alumnus of Ravenshaw College, Cuttack, Odisha; Delhi School of Economics, Delhi University; School of Public Policy, Birmingham University. He is a postgraduate in Economics and holds an MBA degree from the University of Birmingham.
During the span of more than 30 years he has served both in the State and the Central Governments. He started his career as Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Govt. of Punjab. Since then he has held several positions including Principal Secretary, Departments of School Education; Local Government; Governance Reforms; and Director General, Mahatma Gandhi State Institute of Public Administration, Punjab at Chandigarh.
In the Central Government Roul has held the portfolios of Director/ Joint Secretary in the Ministries of Textiles and Power. Presently he is posted as Additional Secretary, Department of Agricultural Research & Education and Secretary, Indian Council of Agricultural Research, Ministry of Agriculture & Farmers’ Welfare, Government of India, New Delhi.
Roul has authored two books; one relates to Agricultural Marketing & Development, and the other to International Jute Commodity System. For his outstanding work in Governance Reforms the Department of Governance Reforms, Punjab was awarded Prime Minister’s Excellence Award in Public Administration for the year 2012-13.
Jeet Singh Sandhu
Deputy Director General, ICAR
Jeet Singh Sandhu, Deputy Director General (Crop Science), Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR), New Delhi is a renowned legume breeder. He was associated with the development of 22 varieties of different pulse crops and his contributions to chickpea and Vigna wide hybridization have been widely acclaimed. He is an accomplished teacher of plant breeding and genetics and guided several post graduate students at Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana. He has published 215 research papers in journals of national and international repute.
In March, 2010, Sandhu joined the ICAR as Assistant Director General (Seeds) and contributed significantly to the enhancement of breeder seed production and varietal replacement of different crops. He developed the guidelines for breeder seeds lifting, and policy planning related to seed. Sandhu supervised the research programs and management of the National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources (NBPGR) and the National Research Centre for Plant Biotechnology (NRCPB) located at New Delhi and the Directorate of Seed Research located at Mau. He helped in developing a number of MoUs and work plans for international collaboration. Sandhu, who was appointed Agriculture Commissioner, Government of India, in March 2013, provided the leadership to implement three mega programs of the Government of India, viz., National Food Security Mission (NFSM), Bringing Green Revolution in Eastern India (BGREI) and Crop Diversification. Successful implementation of these programs led to the highest ever production of food grains and other commodities during 2013-14.
Baldev Singh Dhillon
Vice Chancellor, Punjab Agricultural University
Baldev Singh Dhillon, Vice Chancellor of Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) since July 2011, is an internationally known scientist in the field of plant breeding, genetics and plant genetic resources. He joined PAU in 1974 as Assistant Maize Breeder and rose to the position of Director (Seeds) in 1995, and served as Director of Research during 2005-07. He also had a short stint at Guru Nanak Dev University (2007) as its Director of Research. He served the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (1998-2000) as Assistant Director General and Director of National Bureau of Plant Genetic Resources (2000-05). He spent, all together, about 9 years at the University of Hohenheim, Germany as Research Fellow (1976-78, 1988-90) and as Scientist (2007-11). He also worked for CIMMYT, Mexico (1993-94) as Associate Scientist.
Dhillon obtained his PhD from the Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi; M.Sc. from PAU and B.Sc. from Khalsa College, Amritsar.
He has over 100 scientific publications in peer-reviewed international journals and books. In maize breeding programs at PAU, he contributed to the development of 16 hybrid and composite varieties including first single cross, hybrid Paras released in India, 14 inbred lines and 3 pairs of heterotic pools of maize.
Gyanendra Pratap Singh
Director, Indian Institute of Wheat & Barley Research
Dr Gyanendra Pratap Singh took over as Director, Indian Institute of Wheat and Barley Research, Karnal in August 4, 2016. Prior to joining as Director of IIWBR, Dr. Singh worked as Principal Scientist in prestigious Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi and is leading wheat breeder in the country. His main research area is Wheat improvement for abiotic stress, physiological phenotyping, MARS & MAB. He has developed 27 varieties of wheat and one variety of potato. Varieties like HD 2967 and HD 3086 occupy large area in the country. He is one of the first research scientist to implement International Wheat information system (IWIS) and Breeding Management Series (BMS), a database for incorporating a set of module, which is being used with accumulated data/breeders data with respect to molecular, phenotypic and pedigree information, thereby improving the efficiency of the crossing programme, selection evaluation and cultivar development.
Dr Singh is recipient of Dr. Rafi Ahmed Kidwai, Dr. BP Pal and, Dr. V S Mathur Memorial Awards. He is a fellow of National Academy of Agricultural Sciences, India; and is presently Vice-President of Indian Society of Genetics and Plant Breeding and Society of Advancement of Wheat Research.