November 9, 2018
NK Singh, an economist by education and training, former expenditure and revenue secretary and politician, will be delivering the 5th GR Memorial Lecture in Chennai on December 3.
Organised by entrepreneur R Ganapathi, who is also the president of the South India Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the lecture series is in memory of his father G Ramachandran, a top bureaucrat who was at one time the boss of former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh as the Secretary of Economic Affairs.
Others who have addressed the GR Memorial Lecture Series include former union finance minister Yashwant Sinha, who delivered the inaugural address and former RBI governor YV Reddy.
This time around, former top bureaucrat and a senior BJP Rajya Sabha member from Bihar, NK Singh, has agreed to deliver the lecture and will be speaking about the economy after the introduction of pathbreaking tax reform of GST.
Mr Singh is also the chairman of the 15th Finance Commission.
It is a matter of coincidence that he would be speaking at a public platform just around the time the report of the 15th Finance Commission is about to be submitted, the recommendations of which will be watched with great interest by the economic managers and finance experts in the country. The recommendations will of course be very keenly followed by the central and the state governments.
NK Singh brings to the table, a rich experience of practically running an economic department of the government and has the ability to take the big picture view of the Indian economy in the global context and is perfectly positioned to dwell on the emerging political economy of the country.
“I am thankful to NK Singh for agreeing to deliver the lecture,” Ganapathi said.
His father G Ramachandran had retired as the union finance secretary after a lengthy career in the IAS from Tamil Nadu cadre.
Sri Ramachandran had battled cancer to come out with his book on his days in the government and as a governance delivery practitioner through the 70s and 80s. Incidentally, just a few days after the official release of his book, Walking with Giants, Ramachandran breathed his last.
Ramachandran had, in his book told the story of his journey from a village to the corridors of power – the prime minister’s office, peppered by his anecdotes that bring out the strong human elements of the political leaders he has worked with – Iron lady Mrs Indira Gandhi or a stern Morarji Desai or a genial Babu Jagjivan Ram or rustic Charan Singh. Or be it Tamil Nadu chief ministers Rajaji, Kamaraj, Bakthavatsalam and Annadurai.