Chart of the Day | Tenure of Reserve Bank Governors

Raghuram Rajan had the second shortest stint among post-1991 RBI governors

Since 1935, India’s central bank has had 24 people—all men—occupy the top post, the latest being Urijit Patel, beginning today. The 23 who came before him have had tenures of widely varying durations. On the one extreme lies A Ghosh, who was there for all of 20 days in 1985. On the other extreme was Sir Benegal Rama Rau, who took over 1949 and stayed there for nearly seven-and-a-half years.
Judging by the general consensus on his performance, Raghuram Rajan would have been a shoo-in for a term longer than the three years he ends up with. In this list of 23, that only ranks him 13 in the list of longest tenures as RBI governor. Even among the six RBI governors who have completed their terms since 1991, when India ushered in liberalisation, Rajan’s is the second shortest tenure, after S Venkitaramanan in 1991-92.

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Which states and departments transfer their IAS officers the most and which ones the least?

This piece originally appeared on


Imagine changing your job every year. That’s what the average IAS officer in Haryana, Jharkhand and Himachal Pradesh does. Haryana is the worst. An IAS officer belonging to that cadre and having 10 years of service, on average, spent just 343 days in a posting. Their peers at the Centre are better, but still far short of the average standards of job tenures, especially in the context of good governance and continuity: they spend, on average, 22 months in a posting.

The data interactive below has compiled the transfer records of 39,000-odd postings of about 2,600 serving officers, as posted by the Department of Personnel & Training. You can use it to see where the Centre and individual states, whose IAS officers are organised under 26 cadres, stand when it comes to transfers. Besides cadre, you can also search by departments, gender and individual officers.

The transfer malaise is all-pervasive. For example, it illustrates, how 10% of postings in 20 key departments in the state cadres (excluding Centre), last anywhere between 33 days and 71 days. Or, how 22% of IAS officers average less than a year in a posting. Or, how Ashok Khemka, who has been transferred by governments in Haryana 46 times in his 25-year career, is only one of the 11 officers to record 40-plus postings.


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