March 26, 2019
New Delhi: The Centre on Tuesday declined to share details relating to the appointment of RBI Governor Shaktikanta Das citing a clause in the transparency law that bars disclosure relating to the appointment of key government functionaries.
In a reply to an RTI query, it declined to share the details, including names of short-listed candidates and other such details of the appointment.
Shaktikanta Das was appointed as the Reserve Bank of India Governor on December 11, 2018. He succeeded Urjit Patel after he resigned months after a tussle with the government over the autonomy of the central bank.
The RTI application was filed with the Department of Financial Services (DFS) seeking details about the appointment procedure.
“It is informed that the requisite information about appointment of Shaktikanta Das as Governor, Reserve Bank of India, being Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC) related file notings/documents/records, is exempt from disclosure under Section 8 (1) (i) of the Right to Information Act 205,” the cabinet secretariat said in its reply to the RTI application.
In its reply, the DFS said the selection of Governor, RBI is done by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet on the basis of a recommendation made by the Financial Sector Regulatory Appointments Search Committee (FSRASC).
The committee is headed by cabinet secretary as its chairperson and has an additional principal secretary to Prime Minister and secretary of the department concerned besides three outside experts as its members, the DFS said, without giving the names of the experts.
The section which the government cited to withhold information related to the appointment of Das and bars disclosure of cabinet papers, including records of deliberations of the council of ministers, secretaries and other officers.