Is Duvvuri Subbarao, governor of the Reserve Bank of India, considering an alternative career in stand-up comedy? In July, Subbarao tried to lighten the usually grey world of central banking with a self-deprecating wisecrack, linking rising prices and his receding hairline.
“I must admit that even at a personal level, I do not know how to interpret inflation. Twenty years ago when I had a thick mop of hair, I used to pay 25 rupees for a haircut … and now, when I have virtually no hair left, I am paying 150 rupees for a haircut,” he said at a conference.
That’s harmless, and pretty funny. But on Tuesday, the governor went a step further.
In a remark that briefly moved markets, the governor joked about appointing a committee to debate whether to do away with the cash reserve ratio (CRR), just before his speech at one of the country’s largest and most prestigious banking events.
He said this in the backdrop of the SBI chief’s recent comment seeking a national debate on whether CRR should be phased out, which had drawn a sharp reaction from deputy RBI Governor K C Chakrabarty.