The Central government on Tuesday said Satish Kashinath Marathe and Swaminathan Gurumurthy have been appointed as part-time, non-official directors on the central board of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI).
According to the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet, the appointments have been made for a duration of four years from the date of appointment or "until further orders".
As per an information note issued on Tuesday, the appointment proposals were forwarded by the Department of Financial Services (DFS), which is under the Ministry of Finance.
Who is Swaminathan Gurumurthy?
Gurumurthy, according to The Economic Times, is the editor of Tamil political weekly Thuglaq and also the co-convenor of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) affiliate Swadeshi Jagran Manch. Gurumurthy is considered a vocal supporter of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his government at the Centre, Bloomberg Quint reported.
Talking about his appointment, Gurumurthy Tweeted:
Story of my appointment as director RBI. This is the first directorship ever. Never accepted any private or PSU directorship. Not even audit of PSUs or Pvt cos. Wanted to be free to speak. But when pressure built up I am needed to do something in public interest I had to accept.
— S Gurumurthy (@sgurumurthy) August 8, 2018
In July, Gurumurthy accused former RBI governor Raghuram Rajan of destroying the central bank's independence "by making it subservient to global thought rather than pursue India centric solutions". "The RBI can't now move away from that line for fear of going against global financial opinion. RBI has lost its capacity to think for India," Gurumurthy said in Tweet. In November 2017, while criticising Rajan, he said:
Raghuram Rajan is an honest and competent banker, but got reintroduced to India through very wrong people. By this process he became more a secular idelogue against Modi than an economic thinker. https://t.co/FB91aRwVHK — S Gurumurthy (@sgurumurthy) November 27, 2017
In June 2016, Gurumurthy, in an interview to The Economic Times, criticised the RBI's NPA-related policies, terming them a "sledgehammer approach". He said the norms were "not appropriate to India and destroyed corporate India's confidence, shocking them into a shell".
Responding to a question on what he believed were the qualities of an ideal RBI governor, Gurumurthy said, "We don't need a celebrity as a governor who will not risk damage to his bio. We need someone like Dr YV Reddy who will become celebrated as governor — someone who knows or tries to know the deeper India, not limiting one's ideas and interests to the financial world in and out of India and who keeps the head down and work."
Journalist Paranjoy Guha Thakurta has said that the Modi government's decision, in November 2016 to demonetise Rs 500 and Rs 1000 denomination notes "was based on inputs from a few close advisers of the prime minister, notable among whom was Swaminathan Gurumurthy."
Thakurta further claims that "Gurumurthy belongs to a small group of thinkers whose views are given considerable importance by the prime minister."
Who is Satish Kashinath Marathe?
Marathe is the patron of an NGO called Sahakar Bharati. The NGO lists "enlightening the masses about the benefits of the co-operative movement" as one of its objectives.
"Helping co-operatives to represent matters relating to promoting forming and their working with the Co-Operative Department, State and Central Governments, RBI and such other Institutions at State and National levels," is another of its objectives.
Earlier, Marathe, according to Bloomberg Quint, was associated with the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad (ABVP), the students' wing of the RSS. He has also worked as the honorary secretary of the Indian Banks’ Association (IBA) and as the vice president of the Private Sector Bank’s Association.
With inputs from IANS
Updated Date: Aug 08, 2018 17:06:31 IST