Crony committeeism is manifest in India’s economic policymaking..

India is not just about crony capitalism. Another form is crony committeeism. Under this form of cronyism, there are a handful of people who sit on committees that form/shape economic policy. This is especially true for high profile committees to look at the financial sector.

It is like a revolving door of sorts where handful of people keep moving from one committee in one room to another committee sitting in the other room. Needless to say, most of these come from a highly elite background (read educated in west) who might actually be learning about the sector sitting on the committee itself. The old school/college network is highly important here as you choose and pick based on the network. It is also a great way to extend your career post retirement into eternity.

This cronyism like all other forms of cronyism is problematic and shows its results laters. There is very little dissent and the committee usually carries the opinion of the executive who set up the committee. After all the selection was for this purpose only.

No matter who you appoint/elect in India, cronyism will manifest in its own ways. Infact more hype there is to independence of the appointed executive, more likely that person will use the powers to support people close to him/her.

How else do you explain that one individual is elected to every important committee RBI has been appointing these days. More importantly, this individual is on RBI’s board too! He chairs committees, makes recommendations and then is part of the board which reviews the committee recommendations.

The same person recently chaired a committee on a financial inclusion , then was part of the committee to give licences to large banks and now on a new committee to give licences to payment banks.In his financial inclusion report, he proposed setting up the same payment banks. So he recommends setting up these payment banks, then recommends who should be given these licences and then sits on the RBI board approving his own licences.

Now one is not questioning the credentials but why just one person for everything that too from RBI’s board itself? Why can’t RBI appoint other independent individuals? How is that for crony committeeism?

And then we are lectured by all these guardians on all kinds of corruption and cronyism in the government system, ignoring their own actions when part of the government. Real tall (double) standards that…

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4 Responses to “Crony committeeism is manifest in India’s economic policymaking..”

  1. Ramesh Says:

    Well said – and I must add, with a great level of courage as you’re in the same industry. Would be interesting to know what the rest of industry is thinking ! Is Nachiket Mor the only individual with requisite competence ?

  2. Acharya Says:

    I think you are referring to Mr.Nachiket Mor. While I agree with the spirit of the article, I don’t find any wrong doings in appointing able people in such committees of the caliber of Dr.Mor. The fact that he is in a number of committees related to financial market speaks about his domain knowledge and it certainly may not a case
    of any crony committeeism as alluded by you.

  3. Amol Agrawal Says:

    Cronyism is not about capability …it is more to do with closeness with authorities….you just cant have one person sitting on every committee..those who recommend certain banks should not give licences as well…

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