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Chief Election Commissioner


Dr. Nasim Zaidi       

Dr. Nasim Zaidi, assumed charge as 20th Chief Election Commissioner of India on 19.04.15. He brings with him a rich experience of working as Election Commissioner since 7.08.2012. Dr. Zaidi worked in regulatory framework both at national & international levels and has been associated with the conduct of fair and free General Elections of over 20 states Assemblies and Lok Sabha (Lower House of the Parliament ) 2014. He has participated in many International Conferences on the subject of democracy and electoral democracy in Mauritius, UK (Cambridge University) & Nepal.

Before joining the Constitutional Body, Dr. Zaidi has served the nation as a long-time civil servant of the Indian Administrative Service (1976 batch).  He superannuated from IAS as Secretary to the Government of India in Ministry of Civil Aviation on 31.07.2012.  Amongst numerous contributions, Dr. Zaidi was instrumental in formulating Financial Restructuring and Turn Around Plan of Air India (AI) and also setting up the Dharmadhikari Committee to ensure merger process of AI.  He contributed actively to formulation of a report of the Task Force to facilitate flow of investment of the order of Rs.70,000 crores in airport sector during 12th Five Year Plan through PPP route.  He also launched a number of new initiatives on formulation of an economic regulatory frame, setting up of new regulatory institutions such as Civil Aviation Authority, Independent Air Accident Investigation Board, National Aviation University & also flow of investment in infrastructure.

Earlier, Dr. Zaidi has served as the Director General of Civil Aviation. He was charged with the regulatory responsibilities pertaining to Aviation safety, efficiency, and continuity of air transport including formulation of air law framework. He had handled ICAO Audit of 2006 and FAA (USA) Audit of 2009 and was successful in averting downgrading of India to CAT II from CAT I.

Dr. Zaidi has served as the Permanent Representative of India on the Council of ICAO from November 2005 to October, 2008. He has functioned as member in the committees of the Council on Airport Transport, Unlawful Interference and Finance; as Chairman of the Finance Committee for the period 2006-07 and several working groups dealing with reforms in the field of efficient and effective governance of ICAO and Human Resource Management. In ICAO, he has been very actively associated with aviation safety, security and environment. He has participated in a number of conferences, seminars symposia on diverse subjects such as liberalization of air transport, safety management systems, civil aviation security, biometrics and travel documents, air navigation and airport economics and performance based system, etc. He was appointed Chairman of the Administrative Commission dealing with Budget & Human Resource Policy of ICAO in Triennial General Assembly of ICAO in 2010.

During his career, he has served in increasingly responsible positions at both the provincial and federal government levels. He has been associated with civil aviation and tourism from early days in his career in provincial government of Uttar Pradesh. Later, he served as Commissioner for Surface Transport at provincial level involving regulatory functions related with safety, security, licensing and training of personnel, economic regulations, taxations, accident investigation etc. He served as a director on the board of one of the country's biggest transport corporations at the provincial level.

He has served in the Ministry of Civil Aviation in the Government of India handling airport infrastructure matters, air navigation services and issues related to air space management and aviation security at federal policy making level. Dr. Zaidi was active in setting up two "Greenfield" airports in Hyderabad and Bangalore through Public and Private Partnership (PPP) involving foreign investment and airport operators. He contributed to formulation of complex Concession Agreements, the first in the country, for the PPP airports. On the economic regulations side of airport, he was responsible for drafting of the first Draft Legislation for setting up an Airport Economic Regulatory Authority.

On the operational and managerial side, he served as member on the boards of management and for brief period as Chairman of Airport Authority of India (dealing with airport development and providing air navigation services), Hyderabad and Bangalore International Airports and Steering Committees to set up Greenfield airports in other parts of the country. He was member on several committees involved in laying down policies on matters such as slot allocation at airports, institutional restructuring and strengthening of CNS/ATM services and also assisted in formulation of a Futuristic Air Navigation Master Plan.

In the field of aviation security, he developed legislative framework and contingency plans to deal with hijacking and terrorism threats.

Dr. Zaidi possesses a Master's degree in Public Administration from Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University and has been a Mason Fellow for Public Policy at Harvard Institute for International Development. He has a Post Graduate Diploma in Business Finance from Indian Institute of Finance and holds doctorate in Bio-Chemistry. Dr. Zaidi has published several papers in scientific and administrative journals.



  1. A book titled 'Green Aviation' - 2013.

  2. Land Readjustment as an Alternate Method of Urban Financing : A Proposed Pilot Project in Agra Development Authority Uttar Pradesh, India -- Finance India, Volume VII, No.2, June 1993 Pages 345 – 354.

  3. In vitro Exchange of Phospholipids, Sterols & Triterpenoids by Rat Kidney Mitochondria   -- Indian Journal of Experimental Biology, Volume 17, February 1979 pages 177 - 180

  4. Effect of Phospholipase-D on rat kidney mitochondria  --  Journal of Biosciences, Volume 1, November 1, March 1979, Pages 75 - 82

  5. Gandak Command Area Development Project : The Concept and Approach – An Evaluation Report   --    The Administrator, Vol.  XXIII, No. 3 & 4, July – December 1978

  6. Changes in Membrane Lipids and Enzymes of Erythrocytes by Phospholipase-D Biomembranes, 1978

  7. Lipid Composition of Purified Mitochondria of Rat Kidney   -- Indian Journal of Bio Chemistry  and Biophysics,  Volume 13, No.2, June 1976, pages 194 - 196
  8. Effect of Exogenous Lipids on the Permeability of Rat Kidney Mitochondria  -- Proceedings of Biochemical Society of India  1975


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