|Physical Stats & More|
|Height (approx.)||in centimeters- 178 cm
in meters- 1.78 m
in feet & inches- 5’ 10”
|Hair Colour||Salt and Pepper|
|Service||Indian Police Service (IPS)|
|Service Year||24 December 2012 - present|
Manipur (Second time; 2023-present)
|Medal(s)||2021: 'Union Home Minister’s Medal for Excellence in Investigation' for solving Pulwama case in 2019
2021: Chief of Army Staff Commendation
2021: A disc from the Director-General of CRPF
|Date of Birth||2 October 1979 (Tuesday)|
|Age (as of 2023)||44 Years|
|Birthplace||Udhampur, Jammu and Kashmir|
|Hometown||Udhampur, Jammu and Kashmir|
|College/University||Government College of Engineering & Technology, Jammu and Kashmir|
|Educational Qualification||B.Tech in Mechanical Engineering|
|Relationships & More|
|Marital Status||Not Known|
|Wife/Spouse||Name Not Known|
Some Lesser Known Facts About Rakesh Balwal
- Rakesh Balwal is an IPS officer of the 2012 batch of the AGMUT cadre who led the NIA team that solved the Pulwama terror attack case in 2019.
- Since school days, Balwal wanted to become a civil servant. After his graduation, he joined the Indian Railways as a senior section engineer. While he was working there, he felt that his passion to contribute to society directly was missing. After realizing this, he started preparing for civil service in 2009.
- He was working full-time (9 am-5 pm) in a railway workshop and used to prepare for the exam from 6 pm to 2 am. In an interview, he said that one month before the UPSC Mains exam, he started studying 10 to 12 hours a day.
- He attempted for the Civil Service Exam three times. His rank in the third attempt in 2011 was 282.
- In an interview, he revealed that in Mains 2011, he wrote an essay on the ‘creation of small states and its consequent administrative, economic and developmental Implications.’ In the essay, he received 113 marks out of 200.
- In 2012, he became an IPS officer.
- In 2017, he served as the Senior Superintendent of Police in Churachandpur. He has served in the Thobal and Imphal areas as well.
- In 2019, he headed the National Investigation Agency (NIA) team that probed the 2019 Pulwama terror attack in which 40 CRPF personnel were killed. Many security sources at that time revealed that there were very few leads in the case when Balwal joined the NIA. Balwal suggested checking the mobile phone confiscated from the suicide bomber. After investigation, many photos were found that played an important role in solving the case.
- During the investigation, he worked with the American intelligence agency, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, to investigate the involvement of Jaish-e-Muhammad in the Pulwama attack. In August 2020, under his leadership, the NIA submitted a 13,500-page chargesheet before a special court in Jammu and Kashmir, accusing Masood Azhar, the head of Jaish-e-Mohammed, and 18 others in connection with the incident.
- On 16 December 2021, the Home Department ordered the transfer of 27 police officers to various states including Rakesh’s transfer to SSP Srinagar. His tenure was for three years. In an interview, an officer who worked with Balwal talked about Balwal’s involvement in making the area terror-free and said,
He was brought to Srinagar when the law and order situation had deteriorated in the district and there were targeted killings of non-local residents. He started operating with teams to identify vulnerable populations and his work yielded positive results with no targeted killings [in Srinagar] since he took over in December 2021.”
- When he was transferred to SSP Srinagar, the city experienced a lot of terror activities including killings of members of minorities and policemen. He worked towards improving the law and order in the city. He made sure that the number of terrorists in the city were reduced and that no attacks were conducted on minorities or police personnel.
- While he was serving in Srinagar, the Muharram celebrations were taken out on the streets after thirty years. Also, there was public involvement in Independence Day events in early 2023. During his tenure, various international events including the G-20 Tourism Working Group Meeting were held successfully. In an interview, Balwal talked about Muharram celebrations and said,
It was a collective decision by the administration and law enforcement agencies to allow our Shia brethren to conduct the procession. We had it in a calm and peaceful way from beginning to end which is a great omen that things are changing for the better and the dividends of peace are clearly visible now.”
- In September 2023, the Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) announced his early transfer to the Manipur cadre from the AGMUT cadre keeping in mind the situation in the state. The decision to transfer him came three months after Home Minister Amit Shah held an all-party meeting in June to discuss the situation in Manipur.
- In an interview, he said that he was the first and only IPS from his district.
- In an interview, he revealed that he used to read ‘You Can Win: A Step-by-Step Tool for Top Achievers’ by Shiv Khera to motivate himself while he was preparing for civil services.
- While motivating youngsters, in an interview, he said that he was an average student in school and used to get 60 to 70 per cent marks in college. He also said that he did not study in very popular colleges and did not have convent-accent English.