of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) on Friday sent a statement to Governor Urjit Patel, protesting government’s move to send a joint secretary to the central bank to coordinate cash operations, which was "impinging on RBI
autonomy” as well as operational jurisdiction.
The finance ministry's move to send its official to the central bank was “most unfortunate” and government interference was “absolutely unacceptable” and “deplorable”.
The letter said the central bank has been managing its duty of currency management efficiently since 1935 and the RBI
staff had done an excellent job managing withdrawal of old notes. But it was “painful to note that RBI
is being criticised from many quarters, for its ‘operational mismanagement’, by the press and many important personalities,” the letter said.
“Its autonomy and image have been dented beyond repair. Such critics include even former RBI
governors. An image of efficiency and independence that RBI
assiduously built up over decades, by the strenuous efforts of its staff and judicious policy-making, has gone into smithereens in no time,” the letter said, adding: “we feel extremely pained, we re-iterate.”
The finance ministry has already put RBI
in a “quandary”. “Apart from showing RBI
operations and its gigantic performance in poor light, the government now blatantly encroaches on its jurisdictions, which, we state strongly, we cannot accept,” the unions said.
was capable of handling the operations alone and did not require any “assistance”, the letter said.
The unions requested RBI
Governor Urjit Patel
to take steps to protect RBI’s prestige.
“May we request you that as the governor of RBI, its highest functionary and protector of its autonomy and prestige, you will please do the needful urgently,” the letter concluded.