Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Urjit Patel is likely to appear before the Standing Committee on Finance on Wednesday. The committee, headed by former union minister and senior Congress leader Veerappa Moily, has called Patel to brief the panel about government’s demonetisation drive. The secretaries of finance ministry will also appear and brief about demonetisation and its impact.
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Patel has been summoned, days after the United Forum of Reserve Bank Officers and employees wrote a letter to the RBI governor alleging that the image of the central bank has been dented beyond repair post the government’s demonetisation move. Raising objection to the government “impinging on RBI autonomy” the employee unions of the central bank also asked Patel to take action against the “unwarranted interference”.
“We request the Governor of the RBI, its highest functionary and protector of its autonomy and prestige, to do the needful urgently to do away with this unwarranted interference from the Finance Ministry and assure the staff accordingly as the staff feels humiliated,” the letter said. The finance ministry, however, clarified that the government fully respects the independence and autonomy of the RBI. In a statement, the ministry said that consultations between the Centre and the RBI are undertaken on various matters of public importance, wherever such consultation is mandated by law or has evolved as a practice.