Intelligence Bureau director Rajiv Jain and Research & Analysis Wing Secretary Anil K Dhasmana, both of whose two-year terms were scheduled to end later this month, have been given six-month extensions.
The National Democratic Alliance government's decision was apparently taken to avoid bringing in new faces in the top posts of the two crucial intelligence agencies before the Lok Sabha elections, due before this dispensation completes its term in May.
Jain's tenure was scheduled to end on December 30 and Dhasmana's on December 29.
The decision to extend the tenure of the two intelligence chiefs was taken by the prime minister-led Appointments Committee of the Cabinet, an official statement said.
The Centre does not want to disturb the continuity in the IB and the R&AW and wanted a new government to take a decision on appointments on these key posts after the Lok Sabha polls, officials in the know of the developments said.
Jain, a 1980-batch IPS officer from Jharkhand, was appointed IB Director on December 30, 2016 for two years.
A recipient of the President's Police Medal, Jain has served in various departments of IB, including the sensitive Kashmir Desk. He was advisor to the previous NDA government's interlocutor on Kashmir K C Pant when talks were held with separatist leaders such as Shabbir Shah.
Dhasmana, a 1981-batch officer from the Madhya Pradesh cadre, has been with R&AW for 23 years, during which he served in important areas, including the Pakistan Desk. The R&AW is tasked with gathering external intelligence.
The ACC has also redesignated Anil Srivastava, a 1985-batch IAS officer of the Madhya Pradesh cadre from advisor, NITI Aayog, to principal adviser, the order stated.
The government also appointed Ramphal Pawar, a 1988-batch IPS officer of the West Bengal Cadre, as the Director of the National Crime Records Bureau.