New Delhi: After an eventful stint as the Chief Economic Advisor, Arvind Subramanian on Thursday demitted office to return to academia in the US. On his final day, he completed formalities and held an informal meeting with his colleagues at his North Block office before catching his flight to the US later at night.
Known as an academic with an eye for detail, Subramanian’s economic surveys had rave reviews for their discussion on a number of issues including targeted government services, JAM (Jan Dhan-Aadhaar-Mobile) trinity and his identification of twin balance-sheet problems in public sector banks facing huge non-performing assets. However, there was wide speculation that he was not consulted on the disruptive demonetisation decision in November 2016, but he never commented on it.
Subramanian, who succeeded the high-profile Raghuram Rajan in the Finance Ministry in 2014, announced his resignation from the government on June 20 with plans to go back to the US for research and writing. During the time of his resignation, he had described his tenure as CEA as “rewarding, fulfilling, exciting… not without controversy once in a while”.
“It’s been the best job I have ever had, and I am pretty sure this will be the best job I will ever have,” Subramanian had said. He had joined as the CEA on October 16, 2014, for a period of three years after which Jaitley had requested him to continue for some more time. Although his official contract was till May 2019, he cut short his extended tenure. This is the third high-level exit from the government after the departure of Raghuram Rajan as RBI Governor and the sudden resignation by NITI Aayog Deputy Chairman Arvind Panagriya.