Former Finance Minister P Chidambaram said he was "disappointed and profoundly saddened" by Rajan's decision against a second term, but was not surprised by the development
Congress on Saturday accused the Narendra Modi government of "hounding out" Reserve Bank of India governor Raghuram Rajan and said he has done what any "self-respecting" person would do even as Bharatiya Janata Party declined to join issue, claiming it does not offer comments on independent regulators.
BJP MP Subramanian Swamy, who ran a tirade against Rajan, took a jibe at the outgoing RBI Governor's decision, saying whatever "fig leaf" he wants for hiding the reality, the people should not grudge it and tell him good bye.
Former Finance Minister P Chidambaram said he was "disappointed and profoundly saddened" by Rajan's decision against a second term, but was not surprised by the development.
"I am disappointed and profoundly saddened by the decision of Raghuram Rajan to leave the RBI on completion of his term on September 4, 2016, but I hasten to add that I am not surprised at all.
"As I had said sometime ago, this government did not deserve Rajan. Nevertheless, India is the loser," he said.
He said the government had invited this development through a craftily-planned campaign of insinuations, baseless allegations and puerile attacks on a distinguished academic and economist.
Rajan was appointed RBI governor by the United Progressive Alliance government in 2013 when Chidambaram was the finance minister.
Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari said the government had "hounded" a good man as it did not have the courage to ask him to leave.
"The message that this fascist government is sending to regulators is that if you do not toe our line we will mount a campaign of calumny and wild insinuations and bludgeon you into submission. What Rajan has done is what any self-respecting man under such circumstances will do," he said.
Rajan had done a phenomenal work, he said.
BJP spokesperson G V L Narasimha Rao declined to offer comments.
"BJP generally do not offer political comments on any office of independent regulator or Constitutional positions," he said.
Swamy was, however, quick to take potshots at Rajan.
"R3 has said he will go back to US. Whatever fig leaf he wants for hiding the reality we should not grudge it. Say good bye!," he said in a tweet.
Earlier, reacting to Rajan’s decision against a second term, he told reporters, "Raghuram Rajan is an employee of the Government of India. We don't select employees on the basis of popular vote."
D Raja of Communist party of India asked the government to explain if the charges Swamy levelled against Rajan were "genuine or justified".
"What about charges levelled by Swamy against Rajan. The prime minister and finance minister should explain if they agree with it or they let down Rajan."
Buffeted by political attacks coupled with unending speculation over his continuance, Rajan today said no to a second term in the post, a surprise decision the industry and opposition parties termed as nation's loss.
"... on due reflection, and after consultation with the government, I want to share with you that I will be returning to academia when my term as governor ends on September 4, 2016," Rajan said in a message to the RBI staff.
Photograph: Charles Platiau/Reuters