ALSO READNew NITI Vice-Chairman Rajiv Kumar hints at more exits after Panagariya War of words over Rajiv Kumar's column on foreign influence in policymaking In last few months as NITI Aayog VC, Panagariya targeted by Sangh outfits Rajiv Kumar to replace Arvind Panagariya as NITI Aayog vice-chairman A pointless debate
With reference to the editorial, “A pointless debate” (August 10), I endorse its observation that there was no need for NITI Aayog Vice-chairman-designate Rajiv Kumar to invoke the phantom of the foreign hand.
Kumar said “the grip of Indian-American economists is fading as part of the ongoing policy transformation in the government” while naming outgoing NITI Aayog vice-chairman Arvind Panagariya and former Reserve Bank of India governor Raghuram Rajan to supplement his ideas.
Kumar places himself in the category of key “home-grown” economists, who better understood “India’s ground realities” than their foreign-educated counterparts. He also warned that the government might soon get rid of many these “foreign-grown” economists.
The question is: How could he make such national policy-related claims even before opening his innings at NITI Aayog? Isn’t it tantamount to the pre-emptive leakage of key policy matters to the media?
The editorial argues that the real issue is not the economists’ past “karma bhoomi” (their earlier workplace) but their “axiomatic” approach to the much needed policy transformation in government circles, as its action plans can’t ever be devoid of benchmarking against international best practices.
Will Kumar eventually fit in the government’s out-of-the-box idea of Make in India at NITI Aayog? Let’s wait and watch.
Kumar Gupt Panchkula
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