Diamond Baron Govind Dholakia has been appointed as the new chairman of Surat Diamond Bourse (SDB) --- India’s second diamond trading hub that was inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, three months ago.

The move to appoint a new head of SDB was necessitated on Thursday after Vallabh Lakhani stepped down from the post earlier this week. When asked the reason for Lakhani to step down three months after the inauguration of SDB, a committee member told businessline, “Vallabh Lakhani had earlier indicated that he will hand hold the project only till its completion and handover. He had expressed his inability to continue taking responsibility”.

Lakhani was the first diamantaire to shut his Mumbai operations and move to SDB in Surat. During the inauguration, he had requested other members of the core committee of SDB to follow suit. However, Lakhani was forced to reopen his business in Mumbai. “He is expected to return to SDB along with 10 others and start diamond business in the next couple of months,” the committee member added.

Meanwhile, the newly appointed chairman of SDB, Dholakia is the founder chairman of Shree Ramkrishna Exports (SRK) and was also recently nominated by the BJP as a Rajya Sabha MP from the state. Dholakia was among four BJP candidates from Gujarat to be elected unopposed to the Upper House in February this year. “In the coming months, the new committee under Dholakia is expected to fix a two year term for the SDB chairman,” the member added.