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Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee is not inclined to extend the tenure of Reserve Bank of India Governor D Subbarao, sources said. Subbarao, who took over as the RBI's 22nd Governor on September 5, 2008, was given a three-year tenure, extendable by another two years.
His three-year tenure ends on September 4, 2011.
Sources said Raghuram Rajan, honorary economic adviser to the Prime Minister since November 2008, is a prospective candidate. A former IMF chief economist, he is a finance professor at the University of Chicago. Others who may make it to the shortlist include Kaushik Basu, chief economic advisor, and R Gopalan, economic affairs secretary, both in the ministry of finance.
Going by convention, the government does not set up a search panel or a selection committee to find a RBI governor. "The decision is taken between the finance minister and the Prime Minister," said a source, who did not wish to be quoted.
When Subbarao was appointed, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and then Finance Minister P Chidambaram did discuss his candidature with Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahlulwalia and PM's Economic Advisory Council chairman C Rangarajan.
A source said that Mukherjee is against extending the tenure of any regulator or bank chairman. The latest instance of a regulator, whose extension was proposed by the ministry, but finally turned down by Mukherjee in favour of a fresh selection process, has been that of C B Bhave. LIC chairman TS Vijayan too did not get an extension.
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