Panagariya to Leave NITI Aayog

Panagariya to Leave NITI Aayog”

In a surprise move, National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog Vice-Chairman Arvind Panagariya resigned on Tuesday.

Panagariya who was a professor of economics at Columbia University said he will return to academia after August 31, which will be his last day in office.

Like the erstwhile Planning Commission, NITI Aayog is also chaired by the Prime Minister of India.

He, has, however told the Prime Minister that he would be available for serving the nation in anyway possible while continuing his academic assignment.

Before joining NITI Aayog, Panagariya was a faculty at Columbia University. Panagariya also worked as Chief Economist of the Asian Development Bank and Professor of Economics at the University of Maryland at College Park. The Government of India, in keeping with its reform agenda, constituted NITI Aayog to replace the Planning Commission.

Panagariya said he expected a successor to be named. Sources said it was a hard decision for Panagariya, to quit NITI.

Panagariya said he took comfort from the fact that during his tenure a new institution has taken roots and would continue to steer the economy to achieve higher growth trajectory.

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He will serve the think tank till August-end.

The economist has been seen as a supporter of Narendra Modi and has openly spoken about his success as the chief minister of Gujarat.

A seven-year "Strategy" and 15-year "Vision" for India have yet to be published. These documents, he added, were 80-85 per cent ready. His book India: The Emerging Giant (2008, OUP, New York) was listed as a top pick of 2008 by the Economist magazine.

Reacting to the development today, BMS General Secretary Virjesh Upadhyay said: "We were not against anybody".

The Bharatiya Kisan Sangh, a farmer union affiliated to the ruling BJP's ideological mentor RSS, called several Niti Aayog proposals anti-farmer and anti-labour.

"The Aayog was encroaching territories of different ministries".

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