Internationally acclaimed economist Dr Manmohan Singh turns 88
Kanwar Inder Singh/ royalpatiala.in/ Chandigarh
Internationally acclaimed economist, former Prime Minister of world’s largest democratic country and veteran Congress leader Manmohan Singh turns 88 . He is the first Sikh and 13th Prime Minister who served the country for two consecutive terms from 2004 to 2014. Currently, he is a Rajya Sabha member from Rajasthan.
He is credited with playing a key role in ushering in economic reforms as the finance minister in the P V Narasimha Rao government during 1991-96.In 1991, as India faced a severe economic crisis, newly elected Prime Minister P. V. Narasimha Rao surprisingly inducted the apolitical Singh into his cabinet as Finance Minister. Over the next few years, despite strong opposition, he as a Finance Minister carried out several structural reforms that liberalised India’s economy. Although these measures proved successful in averting the crisis, and enhanced Singh’s reputation globally as a leading reform-minded economist,
Dr Singh was born to Gurmukh Singh and Amrit Kaur in 1932 in Gah of Punjab, which is now in Chakwal District of Pakistan. He usually says, “I really don’t know my birthday. This is the date mentioned in my school records.”
Dr Manmohan Singh completed his studies from Hindu College, Amritsar and graduated from Panjab University, Chandigarh. After completing his MA he went to Cambridge University, London for higher education and obtained his doctorate in economics from the University of Oxford. He later taught at the Panjab University as well as Delhi School of Economics, and the University of Delhi.
Dr. Singh also worked with the United Nations twice, once from 1966 – 1969, as economic affairs officer for the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). His second stint in the UN from 1987 to 1990 was as the secretary general of the South Commission, which is an intergovernmental organisation of developing economies.
He served as the governor of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) from 1982 to 1985, held several key posts including the chief economic advisor between 1972 and 1976 while was the head of the Planning Commission from 1985 to 1987. He served as the Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha from 1998 to 2004.