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5 things you should know about Urjit Patel

Think Change India
21st Aug 2016
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The current deputy governor of the RBI, Urjit Patel, will become its 24th Governor on 4th September, succeeding Raghuram Rajan. As deputy governor, Patel headed the RBI panel to draft the monetary policy report, which became the basis of the ongoing reforms at the apex bank.

Image : Bloomberg
Image : Bloomberg

Here are 5 things you should know about Urjit Patel, India's new RBI Governor -

1. Highly Educated

The new RBI governor's educational qualifications do not fail to impress. He completed his Bachelor's Degree in Economics from the London School of Economics, and went on to do an M. Phil from Oxford University in 1986, and a PhD from Yale University in 1990.

2. From Kenya with love

Born in Kenya, Patel studied in the UK and the US before moving to India. Throughout his education, Patel’s scholarly pursuits were well focused on India.

After finishing his education, Patel worked for IMF desks in the US, India, the Bahamas and Myanmar. Later in 1996, Patel was deputed from the IMF to the RBI, where he played an important role in development of the debt market, banking sector reforms, pension fund reforms, real exchange rate targeting and evolution of the foreign exchange market in India.

3. An impressive work profile

With an experience of over 17 years in financial, energy and infrastructure sectors, Urjit Patel's profile strongly backs his appointment. Before serving as the deputy governor at the RBI, Patel had served as an advisor for energy & infrastructure at The Boston Consulting Group. He was also the president of Business Development at Reliance Industries Limited between 1997 to 2006.

Between 2000 and 2004, Patel had worked with several Central and State government committees such as the Task Force on Direct Taxes, the Ministry of Finance, and the Secretariat for the Prime Minister’s Task Force on Infrastructure. He had also served the Ministry of Finance, Department of Economic Affairs between 1998 and 2001 as a consultant.

4. Patel's fan club

Over many years of work and research in India, Urjit Patel has impressed many, including P V Narasimha Rao, Dr Manmohan Singh, P Chidambaram, Narendra Modi, Arun Jaitley and Raghuram Rajan, among others.

In 2013, when he was offerred the post of deputy governor of RBI, his recommendation letter was written by none other than the then Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh. “He is very important for the country,” Dr Singh had said.

Serving as the deputy governor at the RBI, Patel was seen as Raghuram Rajan's right hand man. Patel headed the committee that introduced the landmark changes in the monetary policy formulation of the central bank, reports First Post. These reforms have helped India battle inflation, and are considered to be among the most important reforms since 1991.

5. The Gujarat Connection

Patel’s grandfather had migrated from central Gujarat in the early years of the 20th century to Kenya during the British Raj. His father was born in Kenya, and had established himself in Nairobi as a successful entrepreneur, running a business on spare parts.

Patel’s father passed away a few years ago, and his mother currently lives with him in Mumbai. Patel moved to a small house recently to give his mother better company and is also said to have declined an offer to head the newly formed BRICS Bank in Shanghai to be with his mother, The Indian Express reported.

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