Panagariya quits Niti Aayog, to join Columbia varsity

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Arvind Panagariya was appointed the head of the rejigged plan panel in 2015.

Like the previous Planning Commission, the Prime Minister is the Chairman of the Aayog. However, he will continue to serve an s the vice-chairman of NITI Aayog till August 31.

He said that about two months ago he had expressed his desire to Prime Minister Modi to be relieved by August 31.

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Niti Aayog was formed the same year - after the erstwhile Planning Commission was dismantled - with the idea of fostering development by providing both, directional and policy inputs. The Government of India, in keeping with its reform agenda, constituted NITI Aayog to replace the Planning Commission.

A Rajasthan University alumnus, Panagariya holds a Ph.D. degree in Economics from the Princeton University. However, sources said that Panagariya's decision to quit was due to differences with Amitabh Kant, the Aayog's CEO.

Panagariya has also worked in various capacities with the World Bank, World Trade Organisation (WTO), International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).

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Panagariya has earlier been the chief economist of the Asian Development Bank and a professor of Economics and co-director at the Centre for International Economics, University of Maryland, at College Park.

In March 2012, the government honoured Panagariya with Padma Bhusan, the third highest civilian honors the country bestows in any field.

Panagariya, a PhD from Princeton University, has done pioneering work in the areas of political economy, poverty and inequality and global trade among others.

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Panagariya has authored more than 15 books. In his long career as economist, he has also edited "India Policy Forum", a journal modeled on the Brookings Papers on Economic Activity and jointly published by the Brookings Institution, and the National Council on Applied Economic Research.

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