JULY 1st 1947 to JAN 14th 1957

B. Rama Rau 

Sir Benegal Rama Rau was the fourth Governor of the RBI and served as Governor from July 1949 to January 1957. He was the longest serving Governor of the RBI.

Benegal Rama Rau was a highly educated having received his education at Presidency College, Madras and at Kings College, Cambridge. Upon graduation, he joined the Indian Civil Service and held several important positions prior to his appointment as Governor. He was knighted in 1936. He served the Indian Civil Service in the following different positions: 

  • Under-Secretary and Deputy Secretary to the Government of Madras (1919-1924)

  • Finance Department (1925-1926) as Secretary to the Indian Taxation Committee

  • Finance Department (1926-1928) as Deputy Secretary

  • Simons Commission (1928-1930) as Financial Adviser

  • Industries Department Joint Secretary

  • Round Table Conference as Secretary

  • Indian Bill (1931-1934) in the Joint Select Committee of Parliament

  • Deputy High Commissioner for India in London (1934-1938)

  • High Commissioner for India in South Africa (1938-1941)

  • Chairman of the Bombay Port Trust (1941-1946)

  • Indian Ambassador to Japan (1947-1948)

  • Indian Ambassador to the United States (1948-1949)

As the longest serving Governor of RBI, he tenure oversaw the commencement of the Planning Era and took several initiatives in the field of co-operative credit and industrial finance. He helped transform the Imperial Bank of India to the State Bank of India on recommendations of the All India Rural Credit Survey Committee and also replaced the proportional reserve system of note issue to minimum reserve system for greater flexibility.

Unfortunately, his tenure at the RBI ended prematurely prompting his to turn in his resignation in 1957 due to disagreement with the then Finance Minister.







This article was written by Ushma Jinadatha

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