The colonial mansion on 5,ML Dahanukar Marg (formerly Carmichael Road) in South Mumbai generates as much awe and mystique as its occupant. The heritage building with spacious rooms on a two-acre prime plot,which was taken on lease from Mumbai Port several decades ago,is the biggest perk of the Governor of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) which is not a highly paid job. Its occupant in the last five years,D Subbarao,is shifting out after a five-year long innings on Wednesday.
When Subbarao was waging a relentless battle against inflation which touched double digits during his tenure and subsequently came down — in the last three years,he and his wife had a simple and quiet life in the huge house. We had a very private life, says his wife Urmila,a 1975 batch IAS officer who last worked as the chief vigilance officer of Air India.
We are moving to Hyderabad this week. We have a house there, Urmila says. I also want to visit my children — one in UK and the other in the US. I dont know whether Subba will come. Unlike his predecessors (C Rangarajan became Andhra Pradesh Governor and then chairman of the PMs Economic Advisory Council; Bimal Jalan got into the Rajya Sabha and YV Reddy is chairman of 14th Finance Commission),Subbarao doesnt have any post-retirement offer from the government,giving him ample time to work for NGOs.
Subbarao,who annoyed his boss,finance minister P Chidambaram,several times with his tough stance on the monetary policy issues says hes looking forward to see how the RBI functions in the coming months.