RBI’s Governor Shaktikanta Das received the Governor of the Year award on March 15 at the Central Banking Awards 2023.
His brilliant leadership during tough circumstances, such as the collapse of a significant non-bank organization, the first and second COVID-19 pandemic waves, and the inflationary effects of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, has earned him recognition.
Under Das’ direction, the RBI carried out important changes, introduced innovative payment systems, and gave growth-supportive measures throughout the pandemic.
Das received praise for skillfully guiding the central bank away from both dire economic consequences and strong political pressure. He demanded that “sunset clauses” be used for the majority of the RBI’s Covid-19 interventions, provided targeted liquidity to important sectors, foreign exchange, and more lenient terms for state governments’ overdraft facilities.
For the second time, a chief of the Indian central bank has received the honour after Raghuram Rajan received it in 2015.
The National Bank of Ukraine also received the central bank of the year honour. Das deserves to receive the prestigious Governor of the Year honour for his leadership in a time of crisis and his efforts to India’s economic reforms.
Under Das, digital payments in the form of UPI flourished in India, making it the country with the biggest real-time payments market today. In 2021, India had close to 50 billion real-time transactions. According to the IMF, UPI has experienced 160% annual growth rates on average since its release in 2016.
Since private cryptocurrencies gained popularity in India, Das has actively opposed them, openly labelling them as a danger to the nation’s financial stability. The RBI recently launched the Digital Rupee, the Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) of India, which is a digital token that serves as legal currency and is regarded as fiat money.
Das was also the pioneer behind the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST). Shortly after the Modi government took power, he played a crucial role in pushing GST.