India Inc bats for Raghuram Rajan’s second term

RSTV Bureau

Rajan_raghuramThe controversy around RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan’s second term refuses to die. Just days after Rajya Sabha MP and BJP leader Subramanian Swamy called for Rajan’s ouster as RBI Governor, India Inc has backed him for a second term.

Leading industry body CII condemned the personal attacks against him as “demeaning”, and praised him for doing a great job for the country.

“I would only repeat what Finance Minister has said that I don’t think personal attacks are warranted. I don’t think they serve us well at all as a country. They in a sense actually are demeaning. So I agree with him 100 per cent,” Naushad Forbes, president of the Confederation of Indian Industry told PTI in Osaka in Japan.

“I think the Governor has been doing a great job for the country and we would certainly see it as a very positive move if he were reappointed,” Forbes added.

Forbes is part of a high-level industry delegation accompanying Jaitley on the six-day visit to Japan to drum up investments.

Rajan, who was appointed by the previous UPA government for a three-year term that began on September 4, 2013, has been under attack from some quarters in BJP, including its Rajya Sabha MP Subramanian Swamy, for what they term as his failure to lower interest rates and boost economic growth.

Forbes also refused to take Swamy’s continuous attacks on Rajan as anything serious.

“I don’t take them seriously. I treat those comments as noise as part of our noisy democracy. It is a sign of vibrancy,” said Forbes.

Jaitley too in an interview to PTI earlier this week had denounced the attack on Rajan saying the debate should be about the issues and policies, and not about personalities.

“I do not approve of any of these comments being made by anyone as far as the personality is concerned, because the RBI and its Governor is an important institution in the Indian economy,” Jaitley had said.

Rajan raised the short-term lending rate from 7.25 per cent to 8 per cent and retained the high rates throughout 2014. He began the process of lowering the rates only from January 2015.

(With inputs from PTI)