Swamy is wild, and will remain so

Subramanian Swamy has exceeded himself in demanding the immediate dismissal of Reserve Bank of India Governor Raguram Rajan, in a letter he has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Swamy is known to make the most wild and outrageous demands and charges, but this one stands out for its unreason and malice. There is, in fact, the suspicion that Rajan may not be the real target of the letter, but Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, especially because there is talk of a reshuffle of the Union Cabinet. Swamy is not a person who would shy away from the position of the Union finance minister which he thinks is his due. 

Swamy’s chargesheet against Rajan shows how misconceived his ideas about the economy and how wrong his notions about the RBI governor’s role are. None of his points stands scrutiny. He said Rajan’s monetary strategy to fight inflation was wrong. But inflation has been tamed with the RBI’s interest rate strategy. While it was near two digits when Rajan took over, it is just about 5% now. He is not responsible for the banks’ NPA burden. He has in fact put pressure on them to start cleaning up their books. The once volatile currency has steadied since he took over. The economy is in a better shape now and part of the credit for that goes to Rajan. Importantly, the credibility of the central bank has been restored.Swamy has also tried to hit below the belt by raising questions about Rajan’s patriotism. He says Rajan is a US green card holder and, therefore, should not be the governor of the Reserve Bank. Rajan is very much an Indian and holds an Indian passport.

Such attacks are of the malicious kind mounted by the Sangh Parivar against its targets. Swamy’s letter deserves to be junked. Rajan deserves to be given another term at the helm of the apex bank to comp-lete the work he has embarked on in the first term.

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