MANGALURU: Antony Lobo appointed as Honorary Consul of Spain and Head of Mission in Chennai from June 2017, by Embassy of Spain in New Delhi, has roots in Mangaluru.
“Antony Lobo hails from a well known Mangalorean family and is a third generation resident of Chennai,’’ informs historian and columnist I J Saldanha Shet. Consul Antony Lobo, as official representative of Spanish government in Chennai, is working to achieve closer cooperation and relations between India and Spain. Towards encouraging and fostering stronger educational, economic, cultural, humanitarian and bi-lateral trade and relationships, a Spanish visa application centre was opened in Chennai.
In the past, visa applications were processed in Mumbai and New Delhi only. Lobo also serves as Managing Director of AMLO Advisory Private Limited, an international advisory firm offering services in international trade on imports and exports to large corporates and traders. Lobo’s maternal grandfather Chevalier Gilbert Pais was a leading Advocate and Senior partner of the firm Pais, Lobo and Alvares in Chennai in 1948. Pais was appointed Vice Consul of Spain in 1953.
Following his ill-health, the mantle was handed over to his son-in-law, Consul Antony’s father Chevalier George Lobo, in 1970. George Lobo, son of Antony Lobo, hailed from a well known ‘Shenoy’ family of Central Mangaluru, Shet informed Express. The family with roots in Mangaluru had successfully facilitated visits of high-level Spanish officials including Prince Juan Carlos’s maiden visit to India and subsequent visits of Queen Sofia, her mother Queen Frederica to Chennai.
“Chev Lobo in 1974 was knighted by General Francisco Franco and was conferred ‘Knighthood of Cruz De caballero la order de Merito civil’ for services to Spain,’’ Shet said. After the death of Chev Lobo, Consul Antony’s mother Inez Lobo (daughter of Chev Gilbert Pais) was appointed as consul in 1985. In 1997, Inez Lobo received the award, ‘Rociero De Honor’, given by Cultural Association of Seville, Spain and Knighthood of ‘Cruz De Caballero de la order de Merito Civil’ for her outstanding services in 2007.
In June 2017, Antony Lobo, the youngest son of Inez Lobo was appointed Consul of Spain. The Lobos still reside at the same location for the last 70 years and the Consulate is situated within the same premises in San Thom Mylapore.