RBI Governor Urjit Patel calls on Arun Jaitley

Mumbai: Deputy RBI governor R Gandhiwas on Tuesday given the charge of the monetary policy department, including forecasting and modeling unit, which was earlier under governor Urjit Patel. The RBI revised the portfolios of its deputy governors, on the day Raghuram Rajan handed over governorship to Urjit Patel. Both were widely credited for other signature reforms, including a target for consumer inflation.

However, the "handover" took place today, the first working day, because of "Ganesh Chaturthi" holiday yesterday.

The former Reliance Industries executive will also need to work closely with bankers - a relationship that frayed at times under Rajan due to tensions over banks´ reluctance to pass on the RBI´s hefty rate cuts and a push to clean up $120 billion in bad loans in the banking system by March 2017.Patel took over on Sunday, the RBI said. He said that because of the RBI's tight monetary controls, inflation now borders around the upper limit of 6per cent set by the government.

"(He) seems well-positioned to further institutionalize these policy changes in the period ahead.

Deputy Governor NS Vishwanathan's portfolio include banking regulation, communication, financial stability unit, corporate services, and risk monitoring department. The next monetary policy review is on October 4 "when we will talk", Patel told reporters after the meeting.

Rajan had cut the policy repo rate by 150 basis points (bps) since the start of 2015, but has held off on easing further since April as inflation picked up. Vegetable prices could retreat from a high base previous year. Much of the recent acceleration in prices has been driven by food.

He has several publications in areas of Indian macroeconomics, monetary policy, public finance, financial sector, global trade, and regulatory economics, the RBI said.

"Representing India, he actively participated in steering the signing into force of the inter-governmental treaty and the Inter-Central Bank Agreement (ICBA) among the BRICS nations, which led to the establishment of the Contingent Reserve Arrangement (CRA), a swap line framework among the central banks of these countries", RBI said. The new person will take charge of the vacancy created by Patel's elevation to the post of RBI governor.

Vanessa Coleman

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