Money & Banking

When Subbarao made (up) news

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on March 12, 2018

Subbarao

Reserve Bank of India Governor D. Subbarao had a prank up his sleeve at a banking summit in Mumbai. With a straight face he announced that the central bank has set up a ‘committee’ to review the need to retain the much-debated cash reserve ratio (CRR).

This announcement led some reporters to go overboard in excitement and relay the news.

But when the Governor revealed the names of the committee members and its conditions, people realised he was only joking.

The members of the committee, Subbarao said, would be Pratip Chaudhuri, Chairman, State Bank of India, and K.C. Chakrabarty, Deputy Governor, RBI. Both, with opposite views on CRR (the percentage of deposits that banks need to keep with RBI), have sparred over the issue.

Subbarao said the two conditions for such a committee would be: First, the two members would be locked up in a room till they come to an amicable solution.

And, second, the findings of the committee should not be made public until his own term as Governor comes to an end.

The audience broke into spontaneous laughter.

The news channels that promptly flashed the ‘news’ had to withdraw it minutes later.

Confused, some reporters went to the Governor at the end of the conference asking if the CRR committee was a joke. He countered: “What do you think?”

>satyanarayan.iyer@thehindu.co.in

Published on September 04, 2012

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