Noted economist Rajiv Kumar took over as the Vice-Chairman of government National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog. He succeeds Indian- American economist Arvind Panagariya who had resigned to return to academia.
As a Vice Chairman of NITI Aayog, he will hold Union Cabinet Minister rank. Prime Minister is ex-officio Chairperson of the Aayog.
Mr Kumar was a senior fellow at the Centre for Policy Research. He holds a Doctor of Philosophy in economics from Oxford and PhD from Lucknow University. He also served as Secretary General of industry association, FICCI.
He was a member of the National Security Advisory Board between 2006 and 2008. He also had served as the Chief Economist of the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) and held senior positions in the Asian Development Bank (ADB), Indian Ministry of Industries and Ministry of Finance. He has authored several books on the Indian economy and India’s national security.
NITI Aayog is the premier policy ‘Think Tank’ of the Union Government, providing both directional and policy inputs. It is non-constitutional and non-statutory body established formed through resolution of Union Cabinet on January 1, 2015. It had replaced had replaced the 65-year old Planning Commission established in 1950.
NITI Aayog is an advisory body with mandate to provide critical directional and strategic inputs across spectrum of key elements of policy to the centre. It acts as quintessential platform of Central Government to bring States to act together in national interest and thereby fosters Cooperative Federalism. It also designs strategic and long term policies and programmes for Central Government of India and also provides relevant technical advice to Centre.