MUMBAI (AFP) – The deputy governor of India’s central bank has resigned, the bank said Monday, making him the second top official to quit the organisation in less than a year.
Viral Acharya stood down almost six months ahead of his tenure, which had been clouded by speculation that he was at odds with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government.
The Reserve Bank of India however said Acharya had resigned for personal reasons.
“Acharya submitted a letter to the RBI informing that due to unavoidable personal circumstances, he is unable to continue his term as a Deputy Governor of the RBI,” the central bank said in a statement.
The 42-year-old ruffled feathers in October after publicly accusing the government of undermining the bank’s independence.
That followed the resignation of governor Urjit Patel in December following a public spat with Modi’s administration about alleged government interference.
Modi chose close ally Shaktikanta Das to succeed Patel, apparently to steer clear of any new controversy.
Many experts had expected Acharya to quit immediately after Patel’s resignation.
“Acharya’s resignation is unfortunate but not surprising as he had clashed with the government over independence issues,” economist Ashutosh Datar told AFP.
“It is unprecedented how two senior functionaries of the central bank have quit before their term ended,” Datar said.
Local media reports said Acharya would likely return to his family in the US and join New York University’s Stern School of Business in August.