Narayanasami tops list for RBI deputy governor

Written by Kumud Das | Mumbai | Updated: Dec 25 2008, 06:42am hrs
The search committee set up by the government to identify a suitable candidate for the post of Reserve Bank of India (RBI) deputy governor has short-listed five names for the job. The committee is likely to meet again on January 5 to discuss the names. The vacancy arose following the retirement of V Leeladhar earlier this month.

A ministry of finance source told FE on Wednesday that the search committee had met in New Delhi on Monday and reiterated the eligibility criterion laid down earlier for the position, which states that the incumbent must have served as chairman & managing director of a nationalised bank for at least two years.

TS Narayanasami, chairman & managing director of Bank of India, tops in the list of candidates, who are all serving heads of public sector banks. Narayanasami is senior-most among the candidates and has served as CMD of two other state-run banks before taking on his current assignment.

Other CMDs short-listed by the committee include IDBI Banks Yogesh Agarwal, Punjab National Banks KC Chakrabarty, Union Bank of Indias MV Nair and Canara Banks AC Mahajan. Of them, Agarwal is the only one that has not completed a two-year term as head of a state-run bank, as laid down by the eligibility criterion. But he is still in the reckoning as he has served as managing director of the countrys largest lender, State Bank of India, for significant length of time--considered equivalent to the job of CMD at any other nationalised bank.

Headed by RBI governor D Subbarao, the committee comprises finance secretary Arun Ramanathan, department of personnel training secretary Rahul Sareen, State Bank of India former managing director Vepa Kamesan and Indian School of Business (Hyderabad) dean M Rammohan Rao.

RBI norms stipulate that one of the four deputy governors should be from the banking sector, as was Leeladhar. He had served as chairman & managing director of Union Bank of India before taking the job as deputy governor with the central bank.