It goes without saying that the history of the Reserve Bank is the history of the growth of our country since independence. The Reserve Bank has done the country proud – the role which it has played in shaping the monetary policy, in shaping the credit policy, and, if I remember correctly, in also influencing, particularly, the supply of credit to rural areas.
The Reserve Bank has served our country with great distinction. But I venture to think that the best is yet to come.
Dr. Subbarao has touched upon various facets of policy-making, and I dare say, Dr. Raghuram Rajan will build on the experience of his predecessors to chart out a new course of action in very difficult circumstances that our economy is facing. We can never be satisfied with the status quo. When I became the Governor, I had no great knowledge of what monetary policy is about, and therefore, I asked the late Prof. Chakravarty to head a committee to look at the functioning, the goals, the means and measures of monetary policy, and that report was pretty influential for a period of time. And I would venture to think that the time has come, when we should revisit some of those areas – the possibilities and limitations of monetary policy in a globalized economy, in a fiscally constrained economy – I think that is one subject. But macro-economic policy-making, targets and instruments, I think, is another area, where I feel fresh thinking is called for, and I sincerely hope that the Governors of the future, particularly Dr. Raghuram Rajan, will attempt to revisit some of these difficult areas.
And thank you all, at least among professional people, a degree of national consensus, which we need, if we have to carry out social and economic change in a country as large, as diverse, as complex as India is.
As I said, the Reserve Bank has served our country with great distinction. But as I ventured to think, the best is yet to come.
With these words, I wish Dr. Subbarao the best. he has served the Reserve Bank and our country with great devotion. And I extend a hearty welcome to his successor, Dr. Raghuram Rajan. In him, we have a very distinguished economist of international fame. I sincerely hope that the Reserve Bank of India will see a more glorious period under his Governorship.