Senior Advocate, Supreme Court of India
Former Additional Solicitor General of India,
Member of Parliament (Rajya Sabha),
Union Minister for Law & Justice
Envoy of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to Japan

The function was attended by many eminent persons including Smt. Meira Kumar, Dr. Karan Singh, Dr. Farooq Abdullah, Mr. Sitaram Yechury, Mr. D. Raja , Sh. B.S.Hooda, Mr. K.C.Tyagi, Mr. Anand Sharma, Former Chief Justices of India Justice A.H.Ahmadi, Justice K.G.Balakrishnan , Justice T.S.Thakur, veteran journalist Sh. Kuldip Nayar, Harish Khare , Vikram Chandra in addition to captains of industry.
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2017 Spring Conferment of Decorations on Foreign Nationals
April 29, 2017

Dear Sir/Madam
The Government of Japan has announced the foreign recipients of the 2017 Spring Imperial Decorations. Dr. Ashwani Kumar, former Union Minister for Law and Justice, has been selected from India for decoration with the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun, which is the highest category of decoration among the Orders of the Rising Sun. The Decoration is conferred in recognition of distinguished accomplishments of individuals. Mr. Ratan N. Tata was one of the other Indian recipients of the Decoration in the past.
Dr. Ashwani Kumar served as the Special Envoy of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to Japan on the occasion of the visit of Their Majesties the Emperor and Empress of Japan to India in December 2013, and significantly contributed to the success of the visit. He was the Accompanying Minister to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe when he visited India in 2007, and was Chairman of FICCI India-Japan Forum of Parliamentarians established during the visit of the former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, to India in 2005. Dr. Kumar has also been contributing to the promotion of Japan-India relations in the field of Science and Technology, as Council member of the STS Forum.
The Presentation Ceremony for the Investiture of the Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun will be held at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo on 9th May 2017, when the foreign recipients will be given an audience with His Majesty the Emperor of Japan. Dr. Ashwani Kumar, Former Minister for Law and Justice, will attend the presentation ceremony to receive the decoration.
Personal History and Accomplishments of Dr. Ashwani Kumar
Decoration Grand Cordon of the Order of the Rising Sun
Services Contributed to strengthening bilateral relations and promoting friendship between Japan and India
Dr. Ashwani Kumar majored in law at prominent institutions such as Delhi University, Jawaharlal Nehru University and Punjab University. He was appointed as a Senior Counsel by the Supreme Court of India when he was 34, and as an Additional Solicitor General of India at the age of 37.Dr. Kumar served as a member of the Rajya Sabha from 2002-2016.
In 2005, Dr. Kumar assumed the Chairmanship of FICCI India-Japan Forum of Parliamentarians, which was established during the visit of the former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi, to India. The Forum has become the foundation for promoting parliamentarian exchanges between Japan and India.
Dr. Kumar served as Accompanying Minister to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe when the Prime Minister visited India in 2007, and also served as a Special Envoy of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to Japan, when Prime Minister Abe visited India in January 2014.
Dr. Kumar also served as the Prime Minister's Special Envoy on the occasion of the visit of Their Majesties the Emperor and Empress of Japan to India in December 2013. Dr. Kumar greatly contributed to the success of the visit.
Dr. Kumar has been contributing to the promotion of Japan?India relations in the field of Science and Technology as well, as a Council Member of the STS Forum.
If you have any questions, please e-mail us at the Japan Information Centre, Embassy of Japan,

Yours sincerely,
Mizuho Hayakawa (Ms)
Director-Japan Information Centre
Embassy of Japan in India
Tel: 011-4610-4810; 011-2412-2970~2
Fax: 011-2410-6976

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August 11, 2014

Dr. Ashwani Kumar, RajyaSabha MP representing Punjab, today raised the issue of hate crimes against Sikhs in the Unites States during the Question Hour in RajyaSabha. He said that this was a grave matter and must be addressed in Parliament considering the forthcoming visit of PM Modi to the US.

August 11, 2014

Dr. Ashwani Kumar MP participated in the debate on the functioning of the Home Ministry in the RajyaSabha today. He drew attention to the grave and emergent situation in Punjab relating to addiction of the youth to drugs. Citing the Tehelka report, BBC report by Mark Dummett and a report in the New York Times, he said that 7 out of 10 youth in Punjab are addicted to some drug or the other and that within 40 days of the announcement of the Model Code of Conduct for elections drugs worth Rs. 700 crore were seized. He said that over 14,564 cases had been lodged against youth and others in Punjab under the Narcotics Act. Citing a report, Dr. Kumar said that the annual drugs trade is to the extent of Rs. 60,000 crore and could be a plot of Pakistan after the 1971 war to smuggle drugs into Punjab with a view to destroy a whole generation of Punjab’s youth. He said that the issue of drug addiction should be dealt with on a bipartisan basis and as a matter of national survival.

Dr. Ashwani Kumar said that although the BJP has won the elections, it has secured only 31% of the vote share and should not consider its electoral victory as a national endorsement of communal politics. Dr. Kumar said that communal violence is on the rise and that it is no coincidence that 200 out of 600 incidents of communal violence are reported to have occurred in the 12 constituencies from which BJP candidates have been elected. He said that India could be defined by the idea of secularism and SarvaDharma Sambhava i.e. equal respect for all religions.

Condemning the government for ‘Snoopgate’, Dr. Ashwani Kumar said that this was a matter linked to the individuals’ fundamental rights to privacy and personal dignity. Snooping of Ministers also raises the issue of national security and violation of the oath of confidentiality of Ministers.

He also drew attention to the trial by media which violates the basic structure of the Constitution as per a judgment by the Constitution Bench of Supreme Court.

Note: Text of Dr. Ashwani Kumar’s full speech can be accessed from

August 6, 2014

The report in The Tribune today pointing out that 98 per cent households in rural Punjab are under debt is shocking and tragic. The situation calls for an immediate and credible response from central and state government towards ameliorating the condition of the farmers in Punjab. Greater financial inclusion to ensure loans and advances to farmers on softer terms without oppressive technicalities and conditionalities is critical.

The solution lies in expanding the banking network in villages and reducing the dependence of farmers on local moneylenders who charge exorbitant and unconscionable interest from farmers.

The Prime Minister must personally intervene on an urgent basis and devise a comprehensive plan for - i) financial inclusion through nationalized banks; ii) lending to farmers on preferential terms through cooperative societies and nationalized banks without oppressive conditionalities.

The need for a comprehensive agricultural policy which will make agriculture a productive enterprise is self-evident.

August 4, 2014

Dr. Ashwani Kumar, (MP) today intervening in the Calling Attention discussion on Iraq in RajyaSabha called government attention to the urgent need for the safety and security of Indians stranded in Iraq. In particular he asked the Minister of External Affairs Ms.SushmaSwaraj to ensure that the 41 Indians including 31 Punjabis stranded in Mosul in Iraq are brought back to India at the earliest. He told the Minister that the families of Indians are undergoing great hardship and agony on account of their family members being caught in the Iraq crisis.

Dr. Kumar also urged the External Affairs Minister to establish contact with all friendly powers in Iraq and the world. He also called for urgent steps to strengthen India’s intelligence system and mass evacuation capabilities.

Responding to Dr. Kumar, Ms.SushmaSwaraj said that government has definitive information that all Punjabis in Iraq are safe and secure. Ms. Swaraj also said that the government was in touch with all concerned to forge a joint effort for bringing back the Indians safely from Iraq.

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August 10, 2008

Hon’ble Minister of State for Industry ShriAshwani Kumar met Mr. EskoAho, President of SITRA, the Finnish Innovation Fund and former Prime Minister of Finland. During the meeting, Hon’ble Minister of State outlined India’s current industrial and economic developments and complimented Mr. Aho on the successful ‘India Programme’ implemented by Sitra. The importance of undertaking collaboration in the areas of ICT, paper industry and energy sector were highlighted. Shri Kumar also welcomed the establishment of the proposed innovation Centre by Finland in India.

Hon’ble Minister Shri Kumar will be the Chief Guest at the Find-2008 and Second Global Innovation Summit being held in Oulu, Finland. The Conference will be covering the areas of mobile systems and services, automotive engineering and metals, life sciences, clean technologies, e-health etc. A number of leading Indian and Finnish companies are participating in this important event with a view to developing technological collaboration and initiating business contacts. The Conference is being organized by CII in collaboration with Finpro.

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November 20-22, 2007

Dr. Ashwani Kumar, Minister of State for Industry, presently leading a high-level business delegation from India to the Commonwealth Business Forum (CBF), 2007 addressed the plenary in Kampala, Uganda.

Dr. Kumar spoke on the conference theme “Making globalisation work for All”. Making a forceful plea for ensuring that globalisation benefits the marginalised all over the world, Dr. Kumar reminded the audience of the enormity of the global challenge in combating poverty and satisfying the basic needs of the people. He said that India had gained from integration of its economy with the global economy and said that this has been possible because the Indian economic reform process had human face to it. He said that India have succeeded in raising above extreme poverty 1% of its population every year since 1985 and that in the last over two decades India had raised 431 million Indians above the poverty line. Dr. Kumar said that the Indian industry had harnessed the competitive advantages of India to face the challenges of a highly competitive global economy. He cautioned however against ignoring the many challenges of globalisation and said that terrorism and pandemics had acquired a global dimension and required a global cooperative response. Addressing audience comprising of over 500 business leaders representing over 50 member countries of the Commonwealth, Dr. Kumar said that processes of globalisation in the service of mankind must respect and recognise the value of identity and the dignity of difference. He said that India supported the establishment of an equitable multilateral trading regime and called for salvaging the Doha Development Round negotiations. Emphasising the urgency of action, Dr. Kumar said that the world stands at the gates of an important epoch and that it was time to take purposive initiatives to establish a just economic global order in which the marginalised will not be excluded from the benefit of globalisation.

Dr. Kumar is visiting Uganda as leader of the high powered Indian business delegation in Uganda in conjunction with the 8th CHOGM being attended by Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh. The conference in Uganda has special significance considering that India has fielded its nominee for election as the next Secretary General of the Commonwealth. The meet is significant also because the question of further action against Pakistan following the developments in that country will also be addressed at the 8th CHOGM.

In the margins of the conference, Dr. Kumar today met Mr. Henry Okello, Uganda’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs. Dr. Kumar is scheduled to meet other leaders including Mr. Sam Kuksa, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Uganda, and Dr. Ezra Suruma, Minister of Finance, Uganda.

Book By Dr. Kumar
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