Harvard professor Gita Gopinath’s appointment: CPI defends Kerala CM

Gita Gopinath, Professor of International Studies and Economics, Harvard University. File photo : Thulasi Kakkat  

Amidst brewing row over the appointment of Harvard University professor Gita Gopinath as financial adviser to Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, the CPI on Monday said it would not have any effect on the basic economic policies of the Left government.

CPI State secretary Kanam Rajendran said it was the Chief Minister’s discretion to appoint a person to advise him on financial matters and it has nothing to do with the economic policies of the government.

The LDF’s economic policies is clear in its election manifesto and the government would formulate its policies based on that only, said Mr. Rajendran, leader of the second largest partner in the ruling LDF.

“The LDF government is going ahead based on the election manifesto, which will be the basic doctrine for formulating our economic policies. Our slogan is to formulate an alternative to the neo-liberal economic ideologies. There will be no deviation from that stand,” he told PTI.

The statement assumes significance as there are reports that Ms. Gita, a professor of International Studies and Economics, Harvard University, was a supporter of neo-liberal policies and her line was stark contrast to the Left line.

Many Left sympathisers have already raised their concerns over her appointment stating the contradiction of roping in a neo-liberal advocate to advise a CPI(M) Chief Minister.

Stating that there is no room for such fears, Mr. Rajendran said she would only be the Chief Minister’s adviser and would have nothing to do with the LDF government.

“LDF will be the authority to decide the government’s economic policies. We have a Planning Board to advise the government in this regard and formulate policies. The appointment of Gita Gopinath is not going to make any change in this,” he said.

“It is the Chief Minister’s discretion to appoint a person and receive advise from him or her on financial matters,” he said, adding, “sustainable and people-friendly” development is the objective of the LDF government.

Though he admitted that there were reports that Ms. Gita was an advocate of neo-liberal policies, Mr. Rajendran said many internationally acclaimed economic professors and thinkers, who once supported it, had deviated from the neo-liberal ideology.

“Neo-liberalism have become outdated worldwide. So we are not sure whether this Harvard professor also made any change in her earlier stand in this,” the leader added.

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Printable version | Oct 13, 2021 10:50:40 PM |

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