ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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What Works Best

Monetary policy had veered quite some time ago in many countries towards a What Works Best Perspectives on Indian Economy: A Collection of Essays by C Rangarajan; UBS Publishers Distributors, New Delhi, 2000; pp xxxii + 320, Rs 395.

Once recently in a characteristically self-deprecating mode, Rangarajan told me: “What am I doing? Cutting ribbons and opening buildings!” Obviously he is doing much more than that. It is no doubt true that his present governorship is a very different kind of governorship from the one he was used to on Shahid Bhagat Singh Marg. However, his economic mind continues to operate the way it has been doing for the last four decades, whether the environment was the quiet academic cloisters of the Rajasthan University and Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, or the busy beehive of the Reserve Bank of India, or the sedate Raj Bhawan in Hyderabad.

A governor will not be let alone. He will be asked to preside over functions, give memorial lectures, and inaugurate conferences and so on. The audience will be as varied as the colours in the rainbow, and he will be expected to address himself solely to the problems that burn in the bellies of the organisers. Run of the mill governors manages this kind of responsibility marvellously with their stock of banalities, and in any case those words fly away in the air as soon as the function concludes. But Rangarajan is not one of your failed politicos or a retired bureaucrat to be rewarded for past services rendered. He takes these occasions seriously, and like the seasoned academic he is, prepares his lectures carefully. The result of these labours are reprinted in this volume which provide ample proof of Rangarajan’s keen mind, analytical capacity to synthesise evidence from a variety of sources, and his abiding concern for the well-being of everyone in this country.

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